earth

Showing 58 posts tagged earth

If you’ve ever pretended to be on the Red Planet, you’re not alone. This is Crew 138 of the Mars Society’s Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS), a team of scientists who are researching what it would be like to live on Mars by pretending. From Wikipedia:

The crews usually consist of a mix of astronomers, physicists, biologists, geologists, engineers and the occasional journalist. Each crew member is usually assigned a role: Commander, Executive Officer (ExO), Health and Safety Officer (HSO), Crew Biologist, Crew Geologist or Chief Engineer.

In addition to cooking, cleaning, exercise, HAB maintenance, GreenHab gardening, etc, the crew has mission objectives to complete. A final mission report is written from their notes, analysis, and experiences so that future Mars astronauts and explorers can be well prepared. From National Geographic:

On the mission, the international team is working on in-the-field mapping, collecting and analyzing rock samples, measuring the payoff from exercise, and taking blood samples to monitor crew health. The team is working in mock space suits and testing work protocols indoors and outside.

The first days were largely spent learning to live and work in the Habitat, which is a round two-story structure that measures about 25 feet across.

After the crew enters full simulation, the Habitat contains all the food and water we need, as well as work and sleep quarters.

This team was based in the Utah desert, but there have been other “extraterrestrial” sites: Haughton Crater on Devon Island, and next to the Krafla Rift Volcano in Iceland. There’s also one in the works 324 miles (521 km) north of Adelaide, South Australia. For more information about the project, including volunteer requirements, check out desert.marssociety.org, and read more at National Geographic.

Watch more Mars videos, including a topographically accurate landscapes of Mars and everything Mars Curiosity.

via Devour.

Using 360-degree cameras to document the landscape and polar bears of Churchill, Manitoba, Canada, teams at Google Maps, Earth Outreach, and Polar Bears International have made it possible for us to explore life on the tundra. This is behind the scenes of the Polar Bear Capital of the World:

This quiet town, set on the shores of western Hudson Bay, is a place where polar bears and humans coexist until the sea ice forms and the polar bears can travel on to the bay to hunt seals, their main prey.

During the warmer months, the polar bears are forced ashore by melting ice. While climate change may seem like a gradual process, often difficult to discern, the impact is real and evident in the polar bear capital. In Churchill, climate change has shortened the time that the bay remains frozen, reducing the polar bears’ hunting season by approximately four weeks…

In addition to this documentation, the team aims to educate about the polar bears’ quickly-changing habitat, and to inspire our reduction of carbon emissionsthe largest man-made contributor to warming the planet.

To learn more, check out these ways to reduce your carbon footprint. And then search for polar bears in Churchill.

In the archives: watch more polar bear stories, more conservation, and another video about how technology helps us understand our changing world: the Catlin Seaview Survey of the Great Barrier Reef.

via Inhabitat.

Filmed by Enrico Sacchetti from a helicopter near the Mario Zucchelli Research Station at Terra Nova Bay, Antarctica, this soaring journey over mountainous white landscapes really reveals both the majestic scale and rugged details of The Seventh Continent.

In the archives, more videos about Antarctica, including a look at what’s beneath the world’s largest ice sheet and traveling back 800,000 years with Antarctic ice cores.

via The Atlantic.

This papercraft pop-up book illustrates how South America and Africa used to be connected, how the supercontinent Pangaea broke apart 200 million years ago, how the Earth's seven primary tectonic plates are ever-shifting, and much more in this TED-Ed by educator Michael Molina: The Pangaea Pop-up.

There’s more paper-inspired science storytelling in the archives, including The Animated Life of A.R. Wallace, stop-motion shorts by Studio Nos, Whale Fall (After Life of a Whale), and another pop-up book: Revolution ( Life Cycle of a Drop of Water).