EVA 103: Planetary Field Geology and EVA Tool Development

EVA 103: Planetary Field Geology and EVA Tool Development

EVA 103 covers the requirements and design considerations for EVA systems and tools for conducting planetary field geology. Included are an introduction to field science in the context of geology; an overview of the processes that shape the surface environments of Mars and Earth’s moon; a survey of historical planetary surface geologic exploration by robots and humans; a survey of historical EVA systems and the design and implementation of EVA suits, tools, and procedures for effective and efficient field science operations on planetary surfaces.

0 STUDENTS ENROLLED

    Course Description (3 credits)

    This course covers the requirements and design considerations for EVA systems and tools for conducting planetary field geology. Included are an introduction to field science in the context of geology; an overview of the processes that shape the surface environments of Mars and Earth’s moon; a survey of historical planetary surface geologic exploration by robots and humans; and a survey of historical EVA systems and tools used for human surface science. Emphasis will be on analyzing the constraints placed by human factors, the EVA environment, science tasks, etc. upon the design and implementation of EVA suits, tools, and procedures for effective and efficient field science operations on planetary surfaces.

     

    Goals

    The purpose of this course is to provide the student with a foundational understanding of the requirements, methods, and limitations of conducting geologic field work during EVAs on planetary surfaces such as the Moon and Mars.

     

    Course Performance Objectives

    Upon completion of the course the students will be able to:

    1. Describe and demonstrate basic field geology skills, including quantitative and qualitative observations of geologic materials and structures.
    2. Discuss and demonstrate the importance of maintaining geologic situational awareness and recording geologic context for conducting effective and efficient geologic field work.
    3. Discuss and demonstrate the importance of traverse planning and the flexible execution of field plans while conducting geologic field work.
    4. Describe the primary geologic processes responsible for shaping planetary surfaces such as that of Mars and the Moon.
    5. Discuss some of the fundamental, high-priority open questions about Mars and the Moon that can be addressed using field geology.
    6. Describe the physical environments (atmosphere, geology, topography, etc.) of Mars and the Moon, particularly with regard to constraints, limitations, and opportunities for surface science EVAs.
    7. Review past efforts for conducting field geology on Mars and the Moon during missions using robotic (e.g. MER, MSL, etc.) and human (e.g. Apollo) assets, particularly with regard to EVA suits, tools, and procedures used and how they affected the science return of those missions
    8. Review past and current Earth analog field research and training campaigns, particularly with regard to EVA suit, tool, and procedure design for next-generation planetary geologic field work.
    9. Analyze and discuss the considerations for the design, fabrication, deployment, and evaluation of a geologic tool (and associated use procedures, test protocols, field traverse plans, etc.) to be used during a planetary surface EVA, to include science task requirements; environmental, ergonomic, safety and other limitations; mission constraints such as mass, power, time, etc.
    10. Design, fabricate, test and evaluate a geologic tool (and associated use procedures, test protocols, field traverse plans, etc.) to be used during a planetary surface EVA.
    11. Discuss and demonstrate the practical considerations involved in planning and executing a field campaign at a planetary analog site.

     

    Textbook

    Selected readings from published articles

     

    Course Schedule

    Online Instruction

    Weeks 1-2. Introduction to geology and planetary geologic processes

    Week 3. Geology and surface environment of the Moon, including open science questions

    Week 4. Geology and surface environment of Mars, including open science questions

    Weeks 5-6. Planetary field geology: terrestrial field geology; past efforts and lessons learned from Apollo to MSL; current efforts and lessons learned at analog sites

    Week 7-8: Martian Atmospheres

    Weeks 9-10. Analysis, design, and fabrication of geologic tools for field testing; traverse planning

    Fabrication of test tools by Integrated Spaceflight

    Field Work

    The online portion of the course will be followed by a ~1-week capstone field experience in the San Francisco Volcanic Field (SFVF), just north of Flagstaff, AZ.  This area has been used extensively in the past for a number of NASA analog mission simulations and NASA-funded geologic research related to planetary field exploration.  Students will be introduced to basic field science practice in the context of geologic observations and sample collection.  Field work will also involve testing of prototype surface EVA suits and tools in the scientifically relevant analog setting of the SFVF.

    2021 Course Schedule

    april

    17apr(apr 17)6:30 pm21(apr 21)5:00 pmPoSSUM Scientist-Astronaut Class 2001 and 2002

    19apr(apr 19)8:00 am23(apr 23)5:00 pm2020 PoSSUM Academy - Red Sprite Group

    24apr(apr 24)6:30 pm28(apr 28)5:00 pmPoSSUM Scientist-Astronaut Class 2003 and 2101

    26apr(apr 26)8:00 am30(apr 30)5:00 pm2020 PoSSUM Academy - Blue Jet Group

    may

    01may8:00 am05(may 5)5:00 pmOPS 102 Spacecraft Egress and Rescue Operations On-SiteOn-site compliment to OPS 102 course providing aircraft egress and sea survial training to complement post-landing human space flight system engineering instruction

    06may(may 6)8:00 am09(may 9)5:00 pmFeaturedBIO 104: Advanced Egress - Spacesuit Landing and Post-Landing Testing

    10may(may 10)8:00 am12(may 12)5:00 pmOPS 104 On-Site Mission Simulation TrainingOn-Site compliment to OPS 104 Orbital Mechanics and Mission Simulation using the IIAS Orion simulator to provide high-fidelity simulation of ISS rendezvous and docking missions.

    13may(may 13)8:00 am16(may 16)5:00 pmEVA 105 Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory EVA Operations CampaignOn-Site compliment to EVA 105 Fundamentals of Underwater EVA Operations using the IIAS Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory. This NAUI-certified prepares on to evaluate actual EVA space suits in analog underwater conditions.

    17may(may 17)8:00 am21(may 21)5:00 pmFeaturedBIO 103 Microgravity Research CampaignMicrogravity Research Campaign supporting the IIAS BIO 103 Program

    25may(may 25)8:00 am28(may 28)5:00 pmEVA 102 Operational Space Medicine Field CampaignField component to cover wilderness medicine in extreme environments, culminating with a 4-day on-site lab portion devoted to triage, scenarios and skills pertaining to wilderness medicine

    29may01junEVA 103 Planetary Field Geology Field CampaignEVA 103 course covers the requirements and design considerations for EVA systems and tools for conducting planetary field geology

    june

    06jun(jun 6)8:00 am12(jun 12)5:00 pmFTE 102 Fixed-Wing Performance Flight Test CampaignOn-Site compliment to FTE 102 Fixed-Wing Performance Flight Testing using Turbo Mooney aircraft.

    13jun(jun 13)8:00 am19(jun 19)5:00 pmFTE 103 Fixed-Wing Stability and Control Flight Test CampaignOn-Site compliment to the FTE 102 Fixed-Wing Stability and Control Flight Test Course using Turbo Mooney, Piper Twin, and Pitts S2B aircraft.

    july

    10julAll Day20FeaturedAER 103 Noctilucent Cloud Imagery Field Research CampaignField campaign as part of AER 103, Airborne Noctilucent Cloud Imagery course to study noctilucent cloud formations through coordinated ground, airborne, and balloon observations.

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