20 sensations

 

After our  Wadi Rum expedition, we created this speculative list of 20 physical and mental sensations that we imagine will be felt by the first settlers on Mars. It is based on our own experiences in the desert, personal accounts from astronauts on the ISS and on simulated Mars missions, as well as how the human body might react to the characteristics on Mars. 

In order to move past the quantitative understanding of these sensations, we paired them with cultural associations in the hopes of reaching a deeper and more empathetic appreciation of the physical and emotional considerations necessary when designing the isolated homes for future space travelers.

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ANXIETY

Combined stress and social factors.

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Fluid shift

 

Decreased gravity, 1/3 that of earth's.

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Nature nostalgia

Biophilia is not satisfied.

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Belonging

Tribe like community.

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Disconnection

Mars is on average 20 light minutes away. Sometimes behind the sun, causing a communication black-out.

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Loneliness

Earth out of view phenomenon..

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Vulnerability

Complete reliance on constant life support.

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Brain fog

Combination of environmental and social factors.

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Purposeful

Indispensability of skill and responsibility.

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Immunodeficiency

Decreased exposure to bacteria and virus as well as radiation exposure.

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Cravings

Lack of meal variation and other sensory pleasures.

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Strength

Decreased gravity, 1/3 that of earth's.

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Sensory deprivation

Lack of space, colour, texture, nature and culture.

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Apathy

Lack of newness and stimuli.

Cronic jet-lag

Mars' day/night cycle is 40 minutes longer than on earth. Exposure to artificial light.

Lightness

Decreased gravity, 1/3 that of earth's.

Delirium

Decreased physical and mental health.

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Restlessness

Lack of external stimuli.

Culture nostalgia

Controlled small colony leaves no room for sporadic emergent culture.

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Lethargia

Combination of environmental and social factors on Mars