I typically write my blog in the morning, but Billy and I will be getting up early tomorrow to get started on the repeater coverage EVA's. You guessed it- great news- we launched the repeater today! Billy and I cracked up as we attempted to tyrap a coax to a fiberglass mast in 30+ mph wind. After looking online, we saw that we had just been hit by a 42 mph gust! I have never had so much trouble trying to stabilize myself. The dust was beating at us, so we worked as quickly as possible. Once complete, we ran down the hill to get back into the hab, and at one point I literally was thrown about six inches. Earlier in the morning we had lifted off the hatch of the hab to deploy the base station antenna.
Once I got the repeater all set up, Dan, Billy and I spent some time troubleshooting to get useful data from the radios. After some tinkering, we were able to send data packets from a handheld to the base station and map a track on a topographic map. I was really pleased until I sent Jessica and Dan out with radios on an EVA to check on the turbine. Unfortunately, the set of GPS' I brought were not very reliable and I couldn't receive any track. Billy and I will use his professional GPS tomorrow to ensure we get the data we need. Although it is so late in the trip, I am thrilled to have all my equipment set up and working. I will definitely be shipping it much further in advance next year...
Had to run outside to recover ATV covers a couple times- the wind just wants to take all our supplies with it- we found an empty gas can had also flown a good 300 feet. Billy spent some more time with the rover. We will do most of that testing on Friday, when we are officially out of sim. Took my last 90 second shower at MDRS for a year. Can't say I'll miss it. I am so excited to enjoy a bubble bath after freezing water and dishwasher soap! Jessica made a pretty decent stir fry for dinner tonight with rehydrated veggies and chickenish chunks (soy protein)- it tasted more like home. We are all in our rooms now, relaxing and looking forward to a movie. The original plan was to go out of sim tomorrow afternoon, but Dan seems pretty adamant on staying in sim until Friday, so we will do so. Crews tend to pick their own simulation dates. I'll keep everyone posted, but can't wait to check my cell phone and get back on gchat! The first week was relaxing, but now I can't help but wonder what I'm missing in the real world...
"Let me answer that question with a headbutt" -Me
Plans for tomorrow:
Radio Coverage EVA
Off to a movie and some rest,
P.S. A late update...Dan, Billy, Eric and I just treked up mountains in 35 mph winds with 50 mph wind gusts to check on the repeater and wind turbine. Engineering at its best. We weren't really treking, we were gliding...
Day 12 - Finally Deploying the Radio Antennas
8 years ago