Climbing out of the Habitat onlooking the Haughton crater rim. Image credit: FMARS/Mars Society

Climbing out of the Habitat onlooking the Haughton crater rim. Image credit: FMARS/Mars Society

Hello, Earthlings! Let's take a trip to Devon Island!

Devon Island, in the far, cold, desolate reaches of the Arctic in Canada lies one of the most studied meteor crater areas on the planet Earth! This is Haughton Crater, one of the best Mars analogue places! This area is home to several Mars-specific research groups from around the world. Here are some interesting facts about this area:

1- Haughton Crater has been compared to Endeavour Crater on Mars, not only for its size and shape, but also the geologic aspects, such as the dryness and frost compaction in the soil- which is very relevant to Mars!

2- Other factors, such as the Arctic day and night cycle and restricted communications, offer fitting analogs for the challenges that crewmembers will likely face on long-duration space flights.

3- NASA has the Haughton Mars Project and the Mars Society sponsors the international FMARS: Flashline Mars Arctic Research Station- both using Devon Island to its full potential

4- White dome structures are built to allow crewmembers to test habitat living, safety, and isolation. 

5- A number of different researchers have been brought in, including psychologists to study the isolation and lack of communication to the outside world psychology toward crewmembers. Biologists are also brought in to see if the dry soil can be treated regularly for planting of small low-maintenance crops. 

 Crewmembers after a long day of geologic sampling of Devon Island and testing custom spacesuits for their study. Image credit: FMARS/Mars Society

Crewmembers after a long day of geologic sampling of Devon Island and testing custom spacesuits for their study. Image credit: FMARS/Mars Society

Thank you for reading and come back soon for a look at the past Galileo mission!