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0201-CommanderReport

Crew 162 Commander Daily Report
Sol 09
February 1, 2016
Crew Commander: Renee Garifi

Our team experienced the first snow on Mars since our arrival on Sol 01.
Last field season, Team ISU arrived to the habitat following a night-time
snow fall event and encountered 13 sols of Martian mud during EVA
activities after temperatures increased and snow melted but did not dry. I
am encouraged by the renewed spirit of my team following an engineering
outing around the hab exterior to sweep snow off of the various pieces of
equipment on-site. However, experience tells me that we have a very muddy
week ahead of us and the first floor of our hab will require extra
attention with a broom.

We are looking forward to our second visiting vehicle tomorrow which will
bring a temporary crew member, a photographer from the UK, to capture the
essence of our team and the capabilities of the station. One of our efforts
during our crew rotation at MDRS is education and outreach. Promoting the
analog site as a regarded research program is something our team focuses
on. I am hopeful for the visit and look forward to previewing the
photographs that come from it. In addition, our team will be requesting
some one-on-one lessons in digital landscape photography, especially in
utilizing the ISO settings for night-sky landscapes. There is very little
light pollution out here at MDRS and it makes an unbelievably ideal spot
for night-sky observing and photography.

We even have an opportunity to wave at our friends on the ISS as they fly
overhead tomorrow. Who knew- the ISS, in orbit around the Earth, is also
visible from "Mars"! Beginning at 6:46 PM on Sol 10, Commander Scott Kelly
and his crew will be visible for 3 minutes at a maximum height of 86°,
appearing 24° above SW and disappearing 28° above NE, over the hab. We will
work with our visiting photographer and, pending clear skies from the god
of war, capture the habitat and the ISS together in one stunning panoramic
image.

Until tomorrow, Crew 162 Commander Garifi, signing off.