Going to the Moon or Mars?
Sitting at around 8,200 feet on the northern slope of Mauna Loa, is the HI-SEAS (Hawai’i Space Exploration Analog and Simulation) site. The dome is where a crew of volunteers stays, simulating what could face a similar crew living on Mars. The terrain has similarities to Mars, the crew can only go outside in space suits, and communications are delayed by 20 minutes as they would be in real transmissions between Earth and Mars.
Currently, I believe the dome is empty. The last mission, scheduled to run for eight months from February 15, 2018 through October 15, 2018, was canceled after a few days because of some kind of accident, the details of which were never released.
The photo on the left shows the approach road to the HI-SEAS site with a near full moon above. Public access to the site is not allowed for obvious reasons, but I do think it would be great fun to dress the kids up as little green Martians and take them trick or treating there. Imagine being inside the dome when there’s a knock on the door.
For more information about HI-SEAS, go to hi-seas.org/.