Latest Headlines:

Archive: 17 Nov 2016

Space Dictionary – November 17th

November 17, 2016 | Permalink


EVA Report – November 17th

November 17, 2016 | Permalink

By Crew Biologist Anushree Srivastava

It’s Sol 55 and an EVA was scheduled. So the EVA team, Commander Alexander Mangeot, Executive Officer Yusuke Murakami and I, took part in our routine EVA briefing with our EVA coordinator and Crew Geologist Dr Jon Clarke. This EVA was again focused on the lichen sampling. We were supposed to conduct a pedestrian EVA in the east of our habitat. So after a brief discussion with Jon about the sampling site, egressing time and duration, we started gearing up. I was supposed to wear a different but exotic space suit for this EVA to test the fogging issue I had during my last EVA. So Jon prepared my space suit and I put it on to check if any adjustment is needed.  Anastasia and Annalea made sure if any trash bag needs to be removed from the hab so that we can perform this task during the EVA. So, finally after all pre-EVA preparation, we were ready to egress the habitat.

On the other hand, we were a bit concerned about the cold temperature, high velocity “Martian” wind, and extremely dusty atmosphere outside, but we did not consider it as a factor to withdraw our EVA plan for today as it was supposed to be a pedestrian EVA in the vicinity of MDRS. So we were almost ready to start our depressurization inside the EVA airlock. But then we received a radio transmission from our PI Shannon Rupert suggesting to abort the EVA because of the horrendous wind outside. Our HabCom and Crew Engineer discussed the issue with Shannon on the radio and conveyed it to the Commander Alex. In the meantime, we were engaged in the final preparation and making sure we were not missing anything in terms of sampling tools, GPS tracker, and other equipment. The discussion between HabCom, Commander, and PI was over and the conclusion was to cancel the EVA!

The funniest part or you can say the biggest dilemma for three of us was – should we be happy or disappointed? Personally, I was feeling little bad because no EVA means no adventure and our agenda was to collect biological samples, which was postponed. As the first phase of MARS 160 mission is going to be over almost three weeks and there are lot of work to be accomplished, I was a little bit concerned from the work front. HOWEVER, I started remembering my school days. There had been times when you were ready to go school in your school uniform, school bag, lunch, water bottle so on… and suddenly you get to know that it’s holiday or your school is closed J I remember as a kid, sometimes I used to be happy that no school and some more time with family and playing; however I used to be a book worm, locking myself in my study room. But for the first time, I felt the same joy again today after my school days. And not just me, Alex and Yusuke were on the same page. I know sometimes the child inside all of us wants to come out and want to live life its fullest. It is not that we were happy and we were not concerned about our individual jobs as EVA team. We all had been to multiple strenuous EVAs, where we reached to extremely difficult and distant locations, and accomplished our science and engineering objectives. Especially, sometimes as an anomaly, when your helmet starts fogging up, it becomes very challenging to deal with the situation from all fronts, which happened to me during my last EVA. So, EVAs are intense and very very demanding, although in pictures they look fancy and spacey!

Another funny story about this whole story is that our XO Yusuke, who is the funniest member of our crew, always imagines something before his EVAs and which becomes true in some way or the others. As he told us today, his first thought in the morning was, Jon will say, bad weather so no EVA today. Aaaand it happened. So we all keep telling Yususke to imagine – more internet, more water, cheese cake and so on… but sadly it never happened haha

I was assigned to write an EVA Narrative for CapCom window today, but since no EVA today, I decided to write about – why…?

Getting ready for EVA

Getting ready for EVA.


Yusuke removing his tracker and smiling of course! 

Yusuke removing his tracker and smiling of course!

Pelmeni & Vareniki Russian Dumpling Recipe

November 17, 2016 | Permalink

Here is a  main meal where we learn that dumpling aren’t only a Chinese dish, but is a very multicultural dish since almost every nation has a variation of that dish. For this time around we had Russian version of dumplings, more particularly the Pelmini and Varenki versions.

Food Report for the 17th of November 2016.

Pelmeni & Vareniki Russian dumpling: (for new experiance hungry guest, friends and familly)

        Dumpling dough:
1,3 kg of white flour, (x2 if you do Pelmeni and Vareniki dumpling)
600 g of water, and (x2 if you do Pelmeni and Vareniki dumpling)
6 tsp of egg powder. (x2 if you do Pelmeni and Vareniki dumpling)

        Pelmeni filling:
1 kg of dehydrated beef crumbles, and
2 Cup of dehydrated onions

        Vareniki filling
3 Cup of dehydrated mushrooms,
1 Cup of dehydrated onions,

Making the Dough
Step MtD – 1  : Mix the powdered eggs and water.

Step MtD – 2 : Add the flour in the mix while stirring. Once homogeneous, reserve for 20-30 minutes. (if you didn’t start making the filling, start Step 1 of your selected variation)

Step MtD – 3 :  Roll the dough until it get half a centimeter think.

Step MtD – 4 : Cut the dough in circles of 2-4 cm of diameter. Reserve until the fillings are ready.

Making the Pelmeni Filling
Step MtPF – 1 : Soak the beef crumbles for 30 minutes

Step MtPF – 2 : Fry the onions with vegetable oil, stop frying before the onions start changing color.

Step MtPF – 3 : Mix the beef crumbles in the onions and finish cooking them, until the texture is to your enjoyment.

Making the Vareniki Filling
Step MtVF – 1 : Soak the mushroom for 30 minutes

Step MtVF – 2 : Make the mash potatoes  from flake mash potatoes with your favorite brand  following the recipe carefully.

Step MtVF – 3 : Fry the onions along side the mushroom with olive oil.

Step MtVF – 4 : Add the mash potatoes with fried mixed and mix well.

Finishing the Dumpling
Step FtD – 1 : In a circle of flatten dough, add a small quantity of wished filling.

Step FtD – 2 : Close the circle by taking a corner and pulling it on top of the opposite side corner covering the filling, to make a fat half circle.

Step FtD – 3 : Repeat steps FtD-1 to FtD-2 until you are out of filling or dough.

Step FtD – 4 : Serve all your guess, family, friends and yourself.

This meal was gracefully made to us by Anastasiya who really went our of her way to make the best dumpling possible. Not all were perfect but all tasted superbly awesome. This meal is best serve with a side of sour creme. Since we didn’t have dehydrated sour creme, nor that sour creme is not self stable we had to eat our portions with salsa, which was also a very good options.

As always please try this at home. Very little supervision is require, and to eat. Please enjoy.

Varenki Russian Dumpling

Varenki Russian Dumpling

Pelmini Verenki Russian Dumpling

Pelmini Verenki Russian Dumpling

Palmeni Russian Dumpling

Palmeni Russian Dumpling

Picture of the Day – November 17th

November 17, 2016 | Permalink

Crew mars 160 with canadian space agency rover.

Crew mars 160 with canadian space agency rover.