Imagine this: you’re part of one of the first-ever manned missions to Mars, exploring Martian soil, when suddenly – you trip. Your leg is broken, and you can’t make it back to base. What do you do? MarsCrew134 simulated this exact scenario here on Earth to work out the gritty details.
It goes down like this: a crew member breaks their leg during an EVA (extra-vehicular activity), and the rest of the crew safely transports them back to base. But the injured crewmember is losing blood, and no one knows how to properly reset a bone – they’re going to have to phone home for guidance (sorry not sorry).
To see how dead on a scale of one to super-dead our injured crewmember would be, the MarsCrew134 Analogue Astronaut Expedition set out into the Mars Desert Research Station in the Utah desert, because apparently Utah is a lot more like Mars than I originally thought.
Some limitations the crew experienced included their awkward suits; attempting to deliver anaesthesia and perform surgery with basically no experience; and delays in video and audio communication due to the distance between Earth and Mars. Check out the simulation here:
If you’re squeamish, there’s a happy ending, I promise.
With the test a success, the mission was able to reveal a few ways in which things on the “Mars base” could be handled better (clearer instructions, better labeling, etc.) Similar tests are going to be undertaken soon by the International Space Surgery Consortium, which I am almost positive is not actually a league of supervillains.
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