Israel’s Negev desert has been the home of a four-day simulation made by a team of six scientists from Israel. The simulation was conducted in that specific space because the land had a similar structure to Mars’ geology, aridity, isolation, and appearance.
There have been similar simulations, but not in Israel. This project has started as a way of investigating and simulating life on Mars. It contained participants that were cut off from the world, that had to wear space suits, conduct research studies and construct buildings that would suit all the conditions on Mars.
This project has been sponsored by Israel’s space agency, universities, research centers and hi-tech companies from Israel.
Discovering A New Way of Living On A Different Planet
As for the simulation, it had a shipping container mimicking the conditions on Mars. There were six people inside the simulator, and professor Guy Ron was one of them, being in charge of measuring cosmic radiation.
He stated that living far from everyone and the online world was interesting and challenging, but he also got to know the other five scientists on the simulation: ‘Bunking with someone is a great way to get to know them.’
The main goal of this simulation was to get familiar with a possible mission to Mars. The astronauts had to live in an enclosed environment, move in a heavy spacesuit and communicate with Earth in a delayed fashion, as it would normally happen with such a long distance between Earth and Mars.
‘Good Science’ in Tough Conditions
Dr. Reut Sorek Abramovich was also one of the participants and she realized that doing ‘good science in this kind of conditions’ is very hard. This simulation also made Dr. Abramovich see that more robotics would be needed for a mission on Mars.
The team had four men and two women. Dr. Abramovich started laughing in the interview, saying that for surviving with men in such missions, ‘you need a certain type of mindset for women’.
Even though right now visiting Mars is a dream, Prof. Ron strongly believes that ‘Kids that are in school now will be going to Mars’, and we can’t wait for it to happen!