Don Stewart

Age: 54
Living in: Melbourne, Australia

Special interest/s while on the mission:

Chief Engineer, MSP - Weather Observer
Unlike an expedition to the Moon, explorers on Mars will need to keep an eye on the weather! Because it has an atmosphere, Mars also has wind, dust devils, snow, and even storms.


Occupational Areas:

Refrigeration and air conditioning, meteorology field officer, community development / social policy worker

Passionate about Mars because:

Mars is a near planetary neighbour which is almost certainly supporting life. It figures prominently in ancient and contemporary human myth and mystery.  Like Venus, Mars is a readily visible reminder in the night sky that we live in a solar system which, although vast in itself, is just a speck in one galaxy of an almost endless universe.  The prospect that one day we might establish a viable frontier outpost on another world which is so intimately related to human history, culture and scientific endeavour is a source of fascination to Don.

Any other relevant detail/s:

Don is our meteorologist and will install a temporary weather station to collect data on local weather conditions at MDRS during Mission 118.  Remote weather sensors will transmit data on temperature, humidity, wind direction and other weather every three hours to a base station in the Habitat.  As well as providing a “snapshot” of weather experienced during the mission, these data might be useful to others planning future Missions at the MDRS at this time of year.

Don will also test the effectiveness of a low-tech water collection device similar to those used to harvest soil-bound water in desert survival situations.  Although this project will not be run in a fully-controlled Mars analogue environment, it might provide pointers to the application of similar low-tech devices in emergency survival situations or to larger scale low tech water harvesting in warmer parts of Mars.

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