Science/Tech

First All-Woman Mars Analog Crew Successful ‘Mission’

In recent news, an all-female crew of analog astronauts has successfully completed their mission and have “returned back to Earth” after a two-week assignment. The catch? They didn’t really visit Mars, but was just in a mock Mars habitat made on a big island of Hawaii.

Mission Success

Last January 4, 2020, six scientists entered the HI-SEAS habitat (short for Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation) — an analog Mars base for human researchers that sits on a remote and hidden slope of the Mauna Loa volcano. Come January 18, at about 4 p.m. local time (9 p.m. EST/0200 GMT), the all-female crew (which includes J.J. Hastings, Erin Bonilla, Adriana Blachowicz, Makiah Eustice, Sian Proctor and Maraia Hoffman)  came out of the habitat through an airlock, therefore completing the mission and concluding it as a success.

Known as Sensoria I, the mission is the first ever all-female mission that was conducted at HI-SEAS. It’s also the first mission that’s a part of the Sensoria project, which is an initiative that will be focusing on a series of missions that would all be female-led and female in majority. The information is provided by Hastings, a bioengineer, the commander of Sensoria I and the CEO of Analogs LLC, a company that is backing the project .

"While future Sensoria missions will welcome male researchers as well, we believe that  women need to be placed at the center of our shared vision for space exploration, that women need to be given a platform for professional development, opportunities for research and training," Hastings said before the mission began earlier this month.

According to Hastings, the success of the mission will help inform the future of the program, as well as other upcoming Sensoria projects.

"What I find extraordinary is, as opposed to maybe a group of individuals who come in to endure two weeks together and move on, we've grown that much closer, which to me gives strength to the rationale behind the Sensoria program to really bring incredibly talented, intelligent, extraordinary professionals in the space sector together to form even grander plans together," she added.

Mars Scientists have been exploring Mars to find potential signs of life and to see if it could support new organisms in the future. Pixabay

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