Sol 12 | The Curse Of The Gigabyte Hobgoblin

Communication to Earth from Mars, Crew 173 at the Mars Desert Research Station, Sol 12 Summary Report:

Mission Status:  

We are all doing well, our experiments are now complete and we are finishing off our remaining outreach activities as part of our mission.

Sol Activity Summary:

Action! So many movies were made today it was hard to keep up with all the activity. And the weather couldn’t have been better for shooting. But first we took a call from The Sunday Times newspaper for an interview. We thought it was going to be a brief 20 minutes group call but it ended up being over 90 minutes in duration. What can I say? We wowed him with stories of our mission. Here’s a brief summary of the outreach and art activities happening around here today: Niamh was shooting her art project in the communal areas, Roy was filming his outreach movies in the Science Dome, Idriss was using the Extra Vehicular Activity to make an outreach movie and Rick pulled himself in many directions to assist everyone in their needs. Roy then made a ‘walk and talk’ outreach movie about the Mars Desert Research Station and our life here. Michaela and Rick went out on a second Extra Vehicular Activity of the day to collect one last set of hypolith samples. Lastly, Roy and Idriss finally built their wall with 3d printed bricks, and filmed their successful proof of concept. We took over 600 photographs today and made approx 10 movies. All content for us to bring back to our home countries and share our adventure with everyone. On the home stretch now….

Movie: A tour of MDRS:

Look Ahead Plan:

We have to finish some minor outreach stuff in the morning, give the Habitat a good clean for Crew 174 and head out on one last EVA back to Factory bench for some geological samples. Then its one last group picture and then we look forward to welcoming the new crew to the Mars Desert Research Station.

Anomalies in work:  

The gigabyte goblin continues to strike, we will never know who or what was eating all that data.


A perfectly wonderful day on Mars today. Warm, the sun shone and dry all day.

Crew Physical Status:

All crew are all doing well. Still laughing. Poopgate is over!

Mars Desert Research Station EVA Crew 173
Photo: Niamh Shaw


A short EVA in the morning for Niamh and Idriss and then in the afternoon Michaela and Rick went on EVA to collect hypolith samples.

If you’ve missed the earlier journal entries from Niamh Shaw’s adventures simulating life on Mars last January as the crew artist and journalist on the Mars Desert Research Station in Utah, you can read them right here on HeadStuff:

Sol 0 | Mars Simulation in the Utah Desert
Sol 1 | The First EVA
Sol 2 | Celebrating Mars Israeli Culture Night
Sol 3 | Trouble Sleeping & Freeze Dried Food on Mars
Sol 4 | Snow on Mars
Sol 5 | How Do You Celebrate Irish Night On Mars?
Sol 6 | What Do We Do With Money On Mars?
Sol 7 | The Inspirational Power Of Mars
Sol 8 & 9 | This Is Mars Calling The Children Of Earth
Sol 10 | A Short Screen Play Set On Mars
Sol 11 | A Thousand Photographs Of Mars

Main Image: Photograph by Niamh Shaw