Monday 9th February
Takeshi and my-self went scouting for possible sites to do our research and sampling while we were still not in simulation. This allowed us to reach further distances and heights without the EVA suits on.
We found and marked 4 sites on the GPS (169, 170, 171, 172).
Site 169: Possibly bacteria extremophiles
Site 170: Lichens possibly on top of the hill
Site 171: A nearby cave, which could be an interesting site
Site 172: A field of plants where we possibly could find Lichens
It was a short one-hour trip (8.15-9.15 am) and we also agreed on further sites we saw in the distance that looked like good candidates.
We agreed to share our projects and work together, and Takeshi will bring back the samples to his laboratory in Japan to analyze and sequence them in order to identify the various species we recovered.
While looking for Lichens we realized they might be quite hard to find and rare in this region, but we found some clear stones which could be endolithes. Endoliths are clear thus allow photosynthesis for some sort of life form that got inside the stone by the cracks. So we decided we might sample some of these possible endoliths as well.
We went back out in the afternoon to scout more sites, this time with Elena as well.
This time we paid more attention to sites with older stones and structures, and found many new sites. At first just some small lichens sparse on the rocks, and then 2 sites with big healthy yellow, green and grey lichens. This was very pleasant and exciting.
Site 173: Possible bacteria sampling site
Site 174: Small lichens field
Site 175: Bigger lichens field 1
Site 176: Bigger lichens field 2
Site 177: other site for sampling of bacteria/endoliths