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Commander Report  
26 OCT 2015
Paul Bakken


Greetings Mission Support!

Crew 155 began our day at 0700 hours.  Due to the drying paint in the staterooms, three crew tried sleeping overnight in the new GreenHab, which seemed to work out well.  Two other crew slept on the Deck 2 floor, while I camped out on the Deck 1 floor.  Normally, these sleeping arrangements may have been less than desirable, but the crew was so tired from our labors that we all slept well.

Crew member Harrison treated the crew to a breakfast of loaded hash browns, scrambled eggs, and coffee.  It disappeared quickly!

As we are not yet in Sim, we continued to work on a number of the refit tasks assigned to us by the MDRS Director, Shannon Rupert.  The notable accomplishments for the day included:

1. Finished the painting of the staterooms.  We can now move in to our crew quarters.  No more of this sleeping on the floor stuff!

2. Finished repainting of the Deck 2 floor.

3. Stocked all remaining foodstuffs into the kitchen area shelves and drawers.

4. Returned empty food bins to Bull Mountain Market.

5. Moved all redundant and questionable kitchen equipment to the MDRS storage unit in Hanksville.

6. Removed old battery bank switch from the Engineering area and moved the switch to the MDRS storage unit.  I strongly recommend hanging on to this piece of equipment.  If the MDRS ever uses solar power, or needs to implement a heavy duty power switch, this unit may meet the need.   Equipment like this can be very expensive, so it is worth hanging onto this one.

7. Removed the plastic sheathing on the rest of the walls in the Engineering area.  The Engineering area walls will be refinished with drywall.

8. Removed vestigial wiring and conduit that had been hidden behind those walls.

9. Demolished the back porch.  The area underneath the porch is now exposed to the light of day for the first time in years, and it is a bit unsettling.  We will need to perform some borderline hazmat removal before proceeding with construction of the new porch.  The “soil” beneath the old porch is a mephitic miasma of assorted refuse and rodent droppings.  This raises a question for Mission Support: How should we dispose of this material?  Should we put it in the garbage bins on the trash trailer?  Please advise.

10. Removed the tunnel section that was attached to the porch.  Once the new porch is built, we will reconstruct this portion and finish off the rest of the tunnel system.


At midday, we took a break from refit tasks to have a picnic atop the bluffs to the West of the Hab.  It was a bit of a hike to haul our food and beverages up there, but the crew enjoyed the cool breeze and scenery while we ate.  We also walked a little further West to examine the deposits of fossil seashells.

Later in the day, we assembled as a full crew out in front of the Hab, in uniform, for a pre-Sim group picture.  Our Crew Journalist, Cassie Klos, will try to get one of these photos converted into the proper format for submission to Mission Support along with her Journalist Report.

I also trained in the entire crew on the proper use of the ATV Rovers.

No Engineer Report today -- we have yet to perform the water system sterilization. Static tank is nearly empty, but we have a full trailer tank.  Diesel for the generator is at about 1/4 tank.

In addition to this Commander Report, you may expect a Journalist Report.

There is one other issue encountered today, regarding which I will ask advice from Mission Support under separate cover.

Crew morale is high, especially since we have accomplished enough of the refit tasks that we will enter Sim tomorrow upon awakening at 0700 hours.

Respectfully submitted,

Paul Bakken    
Commander, MDRS Crew 155