MARS-OZ Subsystem Research & Development Project

The MARS-OZ research and development project involved the design of a series of subsystems which are to be incorporated into the design of the proposed Mars mission crew habitat simulation module. These systems must facilitate the well being of the crew and provide an environment that supports the safe and efficient performance of tasks. It was the goal of this project to address the identified design deficiencies using an integrated systems approach. The study was undertaken by students at the Australian National University under the leadership of James Everdell in collaboration with the Mars Society Australia.

Read the full report here.
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MSA Member Steve Hobbs Launches Space Art Gallery

MSA member Steve Hobbs is a noted photographer and space artist whose work has been used by NASA, the National Geographic Channel, Science Magazine, Design Graphics and The New Sky & Space Magazine. His copyrighted artwork (including Mars art) may be viewed at and is available for purchase in poster form. Proceeds from art sales will be used to fund a small rover development project.
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First Paid Corporate Member for MSA

Mars Society Australia applauds its new corporate member, the Commonwealth Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research.

As a result of discussions between Ms Michele Clement, Acting General Manager, Innovation and Space Branch of the DIISR and MSA Board Members at the 11th Australian Mars Exploration Conference in Perth, the DIISR became our first paid up corporate member in August 2011. This is a major step forward for the Mars Society Australia which follows on from our Spaceward Bound Australia joint venture with NASA Ames Research Centre, our association with the Institute for Bio-Medical Problems, Moscow and the International Mars Society members. Our first Corporate member was an honorary one for the Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary in South Australia, however it is expected that the DIISR will become a more active member of the MSA through its financial commitment as a Corporate member.
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12th Australian Mars Exploration Conference in Canberra

The 12th Australian Mars Exploration Conference (AMEC) will be held in Canberra in 2012. While the venue and dates are to be confirmed, however expected to be at ANU in early November. Dr Jonathon Clarke and his team will be running this event, and welcome any assistance. Further details to follow.
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AMEC2011 an Outstanding Success

The 11th Australian Mars Exploration Conference (AMEC2011) was held in Perth, Western Australia over the weekend of 22nd-24th July. It included a series of talks by internationally renowned Mars researchers including Dr Chris McKay & Dr Carol Stoker (NASA Ames) and Dr Vadim Gushin (Institute of Biomedical Problems, Russia). View the program here. The conference was an overwhelming success and the organisers wish to thank all those who attended and contributed.
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Spaceward Bound: Reports from the Pilbara

Spaceward Bound Australia is on. An intrepid crew of 23 expeditioners have left Perth and been travelling ever north to investigate aspects of life on early Earth. The scientists from the NASA Ames Research Center, various universities and research institutes are anticipating expanding our knowledge and understanding of dawn of life on Earth and our solar system. From what is learnt here, can be applied to potential sites on Mars and perhaps provide an answer for the question, Are we alone in the solar system?

Read the daily reports:-
     Days 1-3
     Days 4-5
     Day 7

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Seeking Mars in Perth and the Pilbara

2011 is notable for a number of significant events relating to the exploration of Mars - three new robotic Mars missions and a major human Mars mission simulation. In this eventful year Mars Society Australia (MSA) announces two Mars-related events to the Australian media, the Spaceward Bound Australia 2011 Pilbara Expedition (SBA 2011, July 10-21), and the 2011 Australian Mars Exploration Conference (AMEC) in Perth (July 23-24). The SBA 2011 Expedition is a joint initiative of the NASA Ames Research Center (ARC) and MSA.

Read the full media release.
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Dr Vadim Gushin & Dr Chris McKay Keynote Speakers at AMEC2011

This year's Australian Mars Exploration Conference (AMEC2011) will be held on the 23rd-24th of July at the University of Western Australia. MSA is very pleased to announce that the keynote speakers will be Dr Vadim Gushin & Dr Chris McKay.

Dr Vadim Gushin - Lead Researcher, Institute of Bio-Medical Problems, Ministry of Health, Moscow, Russia - Dr Gushin is the Principal Investigator of the MARS 500 experiment being held by the European Space Agency and the Russian Space Agency to study the factors of long duration Human space flight to Mars and return. Dr Gushin will dicuss the findings from the intitial 125 day mission and the 520 day mission.

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Aussies Join MDRS Crew 104

MSA Directors David Willson and Dr Jonathan Clarke are currently participating in the 104th Crew rotation at the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) in Utah. The seven person crew comprises Dr Carol Stoker (mission leader), Dr Jonathan Clarke, David Willson, Jhony Zavaleta, Sarah Thompson, Luisa Rodrigues and Julio Valdiva Silva. Crew 104's objectives are to test an automated drilling system, and a manually operated "backpackable" drill system, using them to collect scientific drill cores in the context of a human exploration mission scenario, and to extend and infill geological and biological data collected during crews 83 and 92 to MDRS last season.

Read more including daily mission reports here.

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MSA Calls upon Australian Youth for Inspiration

In the lead up to the NASA Spaceward Bound expedition to the Pilbara (10th-21st of July) and the Australian Mars Exploration Conference (23rd & 24th of July), Mars Society Australia is calling upon Australian students for their creativity and scientific expertise. A range of competitions for all ages of students from all states are now available. So if you have a flair for space exploration, inspirational thoughts about Mars base designs, ideas about future off-world colonies, concepts for sustainable energy management or simply how can we survive a future long-term space mission-then here is your chance. For further details about these competitions including entry guidelines and closing dates, click here to download an information sheet about the Mars base and expedition patch competitions and...
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