[amsat-bb] MARS Society and Amateur Radio

Robert Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Tue Sep 27 19:01:00 UTC 2016

AMSAT - Mars? (Sent to AMSAT-Bulletin Board)

Hams could help out the MARS Society Habitat simulations with some Ham
In fact, some of these simulation stations are in some pretty rare Grids!

The Mars Society has a number of MARS simulation stations on Earth called
"Analog Stations".  Two of these, MDRS & FMARS offer a "near-to
experience" for future Martian dwellers...  Since the first "Crew 1" of
2001, the Crews have displayed techniques for:

* Growing sustainable crops to survive,
* Health & Medical care
* Habitability & Water Reclamation.
* Geodesics and Photogrammetry.
* UAVs & Rovers

What they lack is a realistic communications system to simulate the kinds
of remote communications they would actually use on the planet.  Hams
could consider projects to help the Mars Society in establishing some
meaningful amateur radio between and around the camps.

Having the Mars-o-nauts and mission control operators get their licenses
reminds these operators the importance of  their radio studies.  Example

1) Mission Control Radio Communication ( HF Med / High Power Colorado and
New Mexico )
    For "checking in" and reporting status of accomodations.

2) Point-to-Point Communication ( VHF - Low Power )
    Mars has no ionosphere, therefore line-of-sight radio is handled by
GMRS or 2 Meter Simplex Modes
    Further Distance coverage is handled by a Remote, solar-powered,
Repeater Station(s).

3) Telemetry ( VHF / UHF - Low Power using APRS )
    for Weather, Seismic Sensor, Tracking, EVA Suit & Health, power charge

4) Position reporting ( VHF / UHF - Low Power  using APRS)
    RDF, APRS and EPLRS Methods can be used because by the time man and
women arrive on MARS, there will be a network of GPS-MARS satellites to
support exploration.    In addition Radio Direction Finding can be useful
for Search & Rescue.

6) Satellite Communications - OSCAR SATS [any or all available] ( VHF - 20
to 35 Watts )
    Remote Satellite Dish Controller and Program for Obrital Predictions.
    Exercising the practice of tracking and piloting a Supply Ship to and
from the surface.

7) Power Management Monitoring ( VHF / UHF - Low Power )
    Solar / Thermal / RTG Power Plants and Storage Arrays.

8) Enhanced UAV - ( VHF / UHF - Low Power)
    	Ground Penetrating Radar.
	Geodesics - LIDAR and Photogrammetry.
	Seismic Sensor positioning.
9) Packet Digipeating ( VHF simulating MARS networks)
    Wireless internet - Multi-node - Global coverage.

The Mars Society's Analog Stations of Hanksville, Utah, and Devon Island,
Northern Canadian Reaches have been established over 15 years at locations
almost identical to the Martian terrain, but with air.  Well over 1,000
Crew Members have dedicated their studies of alternate foods, longevity,
geology, mapping, power generation, tomography, astronomy, terraforming,
fuel production....  ...anything....everything humanly devised, to be put
to the task here and, out there.

Seen from their Crew Reports, there's been limited use of telemetry,
tracking and radio to date.  This is a good opportunity for ham radio
Elmers participate and consider what could be used on Mars  and then help
in setting it up (as well as get new experimenters, and scientists into
the hobby)

Think about this opportunity to involve Ham radio in not only the future
of planetary exploration but also in involving these active and
enthusiastic experimenters into a life long persuit of the joy of radio
communications.  Consider  what you or yourClub can do to participate, or
provide Equipment Donations that can be the instruments of success to this
The Mars Society is a nonprofit, and welcomes donations pertinent to their
mission goals.
( www.marssociety.org )

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