HI-SEAS Study to End with Simulated ‘Re-Entry’June 13, 2015, 7:49 AM HST (Updated June 13, 2015, 7:49 AM)
A space simulation aiming to understand what life is like living on Mars is wrapping up after beginning on Oct. 15 and will do so with a mimic “re-entry.”
The simulated Mars habitat, located on the slopes of Mauna Loa, has been home to six crewmembers who took part in an eight-month mission with the Hawai’i Space Exploration Analog and Simulation (HI-SEAS). Commander Martha Lenion, who is the first woman to hold the position in HI-SEAS history, led crewmembers Jocelyn Dunn, Neil Scheibelhut, Allen Mirkadyrov, Sophie Milam, and Zak Wilson over the eight-month human performance study.
On Saturday morning, the crew will tandem skydive from a Chinook helicopter with the Army Golden Knights Parachute Team. The public is invited to meet the crew as they are joined by their “seventh crewmember” Tony Horton, the creator of the P90X fitness program. The re-entry will take place at Old Airport Recreation Area’s soccer fields in Kona. Jumps are scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. and a meet and greet will follow until 3 p.m.
Crew members for the HI-SEAS mission were selected from a pool of 700 applicants.
HI-SEAS is led by researchers at the University of Hawai’i at Manoa, who research psychological, social, and biological challenges of isolation and confinement through NASA funding. The mission was twice as long as any other mission that was completed at the Hawai’i site and is second only to Russia’s Mars500 experiment.