Carmel Johnston, Commander of HI-SEAS IV, speaks about their experience of One Year on Mars: HI-SEAS Mission IV at TEDxCharlottesville Conference (Transcript)
Listen to the MP3 Audio here: One Year on Mars – HI-SEAS Mission IV by Carmel Johnston at TEDxCharlottesville
Carmel Johnston, Commander of HI-SEAS IV
I lived for a year on Mars. I was the commander of the longest NASA-funded space simulation. The Hawaii space exploration, analog and simulation, also known as HI-SEAS, is a series of space simulation studying the effects of isolation and confinement on human beings. This is so we can better prepare ourselves for future missions into deep space.
The first two missions were four months each, the third was eight months and my mission was 366 days thanks to a leap year. The dome we lived in was very small. My bedroom was half the size of this circle. The rest of the dome began here. We had a bathroom, a BioLab, a kitchen, a telemetry room, a common space and then a wall. Nothing was ever further than five steps away from wall, all the time. We joked that our bedrooms were five steps away from the kitchen.
I shared this space with five other people for an entire year. Yes, we all volunteered to do this, and to spoil the ending, we all came out alive.
So this is what the dome looks like. In the front we have a solar panel array. This is able to generate all the power that we’re going to need for the entire day. Some of that power is stored in batteries which we use during the night time to get us through the evening and to the next day when hopefully we have sunshine again.