Dr. Niamh Shaw, Ireland's leading space explorer has returned from another Mars adventure, and as ever, Stargazer Lottie joined her on her mission
Niamh travelled to the Negev desert in February to work with the team who created the newest simulated Mars facility, DMARS. Team DMARS designed and installed a custom-made portable Habitat, setting it up in the Ramon crater desert for a special 4 Sol mission partnering with another Mars mission AMADEE18 occurring simultaneously across the globe in Oman.
Niamh was on site working with the analogue astronauts at the Habitat, capturing their mission in video and pictures. And then she headed to Mission control at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot. At mission control, she got to work once more with Roy Naor, her old Crew 173 crew mate from their Mars analogue mission in the Utah desert last winter.
Lottie proved to be a huge hit at Mission control too, and was included in a number of tweets from the official DMARS social media account
'Working at DMARS was just like being back on Mars', said Niamh. 'Seeing a mission from both the control room and from the analog facility was fascinating and very insightful. I found the experience to be very valuable to my own personal space mission. The isolation of desert is such great preparation for long-duration missions'.
Niamh's new show 'Diary of a Martian Beekeeper' inspired by her simulated Mars mission in the Utah desert and her time at ESA Astronaut Centre in Cologne, comes to Smock Alley Theatre from March 13-16th as part of Engineers week 2018. The show was made in partnership with CIT Blackrock Castle Observatory & ESERO Ireland, and supported by Science Foundation Ireland and Dublin City Council. Further details at: http://smockalley.com/diary-martian-beekeeper/