September 27th, 2010


Be a Marsonaut (deadline September 30)

This came in from the Mars Society while I was in Australia and I only just now dug it out of my inbox. The deadline to apply is now just a couple of days away. If you enjoyed reading about my time on "Mars" and you can spare two weeks and a thousand bucks, here's your shot at having a similar adventure yourself. Good luck!

MDRS 2010 Field Season Moving Ahead

by Freya Jackson — last modified 2010-09-14 09:23

Plans for the 10th field season of the Mars Desert Research Station are moving ahead rapidly.

The 10th field season is now planned to run from December 4, 2010 through May 7, 2011. This year's field season will be run by a leadership group consisting of:

John Barainca -- Logistics

Brian Enke -- Mission Support

Luis Saraiva -- Science Program

Robert Zubrin -- Crew Selection and Finance

Volunteers are sought to expand the mission support group. Those wishing to volunteer should contact Brian Enke at

Volunteer slots are open for participation as a crew member in the MDRS. Crew members will be required to pay for their own transportation to Grand Junction, Colorado and pay a $1000 participation fee (reduced to $500 for students) to cover station expenses.  Volunteers should send their applications to by September 30, 2010 in order to be considered. Both individual applications and group applications of up to an entire crew (6 people) will be considered.

Applications should include

  • your full name
  • full contact information (home/work address, telephone numbers, email address(es)
  • 3 references from work or school environment
  • your resume
  • proposed projects for your rotation
  • a list of all crew rotations dates, that you would be available to participate in,
  • plus the crew position (engineer, biologist, geologist, journalist, etc) that you are seeking.
  • experience in leading expeditions/ teams if you wish to be considered for crew commander
  • any food allergies / being a vegetarian or vegan (because of the ongoing food-study)
  • research project(s) for your rotation, or even several rotations during the season (having a research project aimed at publishable results is definitely a leg up in getting selected)

To enhance your chance of finding a crew rotation it is very important that you list ALL slots that you could participate in.


Potential rotations are as follows:

Dec. 4 - 18    Mars Society selected crew members

Dec. 18 - Jan. 1    Mars Society selected crew members

Jan. 1 -15    Mars Society selected crew members

Jan 15 - 29    Romanian crew ROMARS

Jan 29 - Feb. 12    NASA Ames Space Academy Crew LAMBDA

Feb. 12 - 26     EuroGeoMars

Feb 26 - 12 March     DOMMEX & EuroGeoMars

March 12 - 26     Georgia Tech Crew

March 26 - April 9    Mars Society selected crew members

April 9-23    JUMP_Catholic University of Louvain

April 23-May 7    Stoker led crew: DOMEX

Only the crew dates with "Mars Society selected crew members", are currently fully open to any applicant. However openings can sometimes occur in other crews in the event that one of their members needs to drop out. So please list all slots for which you may be available.  [Note; The September 30 deadline supersedes the previously deadline, which was September 15. Please get your applications in by this deadline, as the active field season is now at hand.]

Included in the participation fee you pay to The Mars Society is:
  •  transportation from Grand Junction, Colorado, where every participant is expected to arrive no later than the Friday night before the start of the rotation. The return trip to Grand Junction, CO, will be on the Saturday evening at the end of the two week rotation. NOTE: Flying out should not be booked before Sunday morning after your rotation.
  • food during the rotation
  • water, heating, electricity
  • use of science and engineering and general equipment, science reagents etc, ATVs, HabCar
  • use of EVA suits / backpacks


Not included in the participation fee:
  • Costs of gasoline for the trip from Grand Junction to the Hab and the return trip from Hab to Grand Junction. (160 miles one way)
  • Costs of two hotel nights for the overnight stay on Friday night before your rotation and Saturday night after your rotation.
  • The Mars Society has an agreement for a competitive room rate in Grand Junction with the Sandman Best Western motel. Sharing of hotel rooms is recommended.
The Best Western room rate includes free breakfast and free wi-fi internet, plus an airport shuttle between GJT Walker Airfield and the Best Western.


For a list of what to bring in gear and clothes please read the crew briefing documents carefully.

Every crew is expected to participate in a number of season-long projects. At the moment that is the

1)       Ongoing food study in cooperation with JSC under supervision of Dr. Kim Binsted of the university of Hawaii. All food including snacks at the MDRS will be provided by The Mars Society.

Other season-long research projects might be added before the season starts in November.

Anyone applying for the position of crew engineer, a vitally important job for the station as a whole and your crew in particular, needs to have a varied background in many engineering / handyman duties, and needs to be willing to be trained on the systems of the station by the Engineering Team. You must follow instructions from Mission Support.

No modifications or additions to the facility will be conducted without prior approval from Mission Support Engineering.

For further information about the Mars Society, visit our website at Your donations are welcome.