Mysterious space rock
During yesterday's EVA, which aimed to explore the wider area around
the base in order to identify
locations suitable for base expansion, Tereza, Ondrej and Filip found
a strange rock on a sandy
plateau about 3 km north from the base.
The brown surface of the rock, a size of a deformed tangerine, was
slightly porous and seemed like
it could have been subject to extreme heat.
The crew-members took the stone back to the base. With the remaining
Internet data available, they
performed an Internet search and found the rock looks very much like
an ordinary chondrite
meteorite. However, crew scientist Elif was somewhat sceptical. "I
have seen similar stones during
an EVA earlier and I tried to split them, which was very easy - they
were basically just layers of
sand, clay and silt glued together in the desert environment," she
explained to the disappointment
of some of the other crew members who already took to the idea of
having found a space rock (to be
honest, it would have been quite an impressive coincidence to pick up
a meteorite so easily.
Elif used a hammer and tried to split the space rock in the lab inside
the hab. However, the space
rock did not give in even after five powerful blows. Only one tiny
chip flew away revealing a gray-
black slightly granular inner structure.
Today, the crew performed another EVA, again aiming to find a location
suitable for building a solar
array and a wind-turbine field to expand the base. During the mission,
they visited the site where
the 'space rock' was collected, this time with Elif aboard.
Several similar stones were collected, with each of them breaking into
pieces with the first smashes
- though from outside they might have looked quite similar to the
yesterday's space rock, their
structure was obviously far less sturdy.
The hopes of finding a meteorite melted away earlier in the evening
after the crew members tried to
perform a magnetic test using a kitchen magnet from the fridge inside
the hab. The space rock didn't
seem to show any magnetic activity. But what the hell it is then?
Anyone could give us a resolution?
During the EVA some semi-suitable areas were identified to build the
wind turbines and solar power
stations, however, the sandy, muddy terrain would make every
construction rather challenging