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Auckland's Mission Heights Primary School has been on a "mi= ssion high" recently, communicating with a crew on a mock Mars explora= tion mission in the Utah desert.
"The students were able to communicate with the team, learn more ab= out their work programme, and about the Red Planet itself," said Mr Wi= lcock. The classroom link-up was facilitated by KiwiSpace's Education Coord= inator Haritina Mogosanu.
Following on from last year's KiwiMars missi= on, the TasMars 2013 Team has just completed a two-week= analogue mission to study planetary science, engineering, biosecurity and = human factors at the mock Mars base.
Two members of the crew were from NASA AMES (David Willson and Jen Blank= ). Blank is also a member of the rover team that landed the Curiosity Rover= on Mars in August 2012 and she is a geologist for Curiosity=E2=80=99s CHEM= CAM. Willson is an Australian engineer working on Mars exploration tec= hnologies. The other two members are Melanie Newfield, Biosecurity man= ager at New Zealand's Ministry for Primary Industries, and Emma Braeg= en, an aeronautical engineer from Australia working for BAE Systems.
"This was an exciting opportunity for students to talk to real= scientists doing real exploratory work at the Mars Desert Research Station= in Utah," said Haritina Mogosanu who was also a Mission Commander at = MDRS in 2012.
"Students do= n't need a passion for Mars, just a passion for knowledge and the idea= that anything is possible if you have the courage to try it=E2=80=9D, = ;Mogosanu added.
She said that Mr. Wilcock=E2=80=99s class were the consummate junior sci= entists and came with questions ranging from =E2=80=9CWhat's Mars' atmosphe= re like?", "How does gravity work on Mars?" and "What i= s the soil like?=E2=80=9D
About the TasMars Mission
KiwiSpace ran a two week mission at MDRS from 27 January to 10 February = NZST, with a crew of four scientists from NASA, Biosecurity NZ and Mars Soc= iety Australia.
ABOUT KIWISPACE FOUNDATION
KiwiSpace Foundation is a non-profit organisation seeking to inspire the= next generation of space scientists. The Foundation aims to showcase the b= enefits and opportunities that space applications provide NZ; highlight the= many opportunities for New Zealanders to work in the global space communit= y; and enhance national space capabilities and education programmes.
To learn more about KiwiSpace, visit http://www.kiwispace.org.nz<= /a>.
MISSION DIRECTOR - TASMARS 2013
Haritina Mogosanu<= br />firstname.lastname@example.org
+64 21= 269 2908
+64 21 622 379
PO Box 301780, Alb= any, Auckland 0752, New Zealand.
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|A replica model of the Curiosity Rover at MDR=
The outreach team of NASA Curiosity rover provided= a small replica of the rover to the TasMars2013 crew to use for the outrea= ch sessions with the NZ schools.
|Mission Heights students, MDRS=
and Mission Control Wellington.png
The students talking= with the TasMars2013 crew at MDRS about the Curiosity rover real size whee= l replica via a link provided by the Mission Control Wellington.
Mars2013 Crew in SIM.JPG
During an extravehicular activi= ty undertaken as a full simulation at MDRS, Melanie Newfield, Cdr David Wil= lson, Jen Blank and Emma Braegen.
|TasMars2013 expedition's crew.JPG
From left to right:= Emma Braegen, Melanie Newfield, David Willson and Jen Blank
TasMars Logo is featuring a Maori Manaia, symbol = of protection - as the expedition has as scientific theme Planetary Protect= ion,as well as the Australian boomerang.
KiwiSpace Brand Material
KiwiSpace Logo (vertical orientation)
KiwiSpace Logo (horizontal orientation)= td>
The students of Mission Heights School in Auckland, talking with cre= w Journalist and Mission Specialist Melanie Newfield at MDRS via Missi= on Control Wellington (Haritina Mogosanu)
The TasMars2013 crew brought along a small replica of the Curiosity = rover currently on Mars.