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August 5, 2016
Aug 05

Mission Day 11: Orbicella faveolata, where art thou?

Dawn Kernagis

A 4 hour tour...a 4 hour tour. Once we completed our training Extravehicular Activity (EVA) dives for 1 and 2 hours a piece, it was time to complete a full 4 hour EVA. Megan and I were the first team up...

August 1, 2016
Aug 01

Mission Days 9-10: Settling in Undersea

Dawn Kernagis

Noel and I splashed down on Friday (Mission Day 9) morning, and 24 hours later we were in full saturation and joined the rest of our crew as official Aquanauts! Before we submerged from the topside...

July 28, 2016
Jul 28

Mission Day 7-8: Remembering Where We Are

Dawn Kernagis

As we prepare for the mid-mission crew switch, we will keep this blog sweet and to-the-point. Amidst the many EVAs, science objectives, and high operational tempo, one thing to remember at the end of the day is what we are doing...

July 27, 2016
Jul 27

Mission Day 6: Home is Where the Heart Is

Dawn Kernagis

To launch the Mission Day 6 update, Commander Reid Wiseman sent us his perspective from beneath the waves: "Today kicked off our Mars analog which meant a 15 minute delay was synthetically added to all of our communications between the aquanauts and...

July 26, 2016
Jul 26

Mission Day 5: Tales from the Topside

Dawn Kernagis

Every morning, 7:30AM at Aquarius Reef Base, the dive support, research, and operations team members meet for 'Tag-Up' so we can review the planned objectives for the day and voice any additional information or questions to the entire NEEMO 21...

July 24, 2016
Jul 24

Mission Day 4: Time at Depth

Dawn Kernagis

We have samples! Today, the EVA team of Matthias and Reid collected our first coral sample for the FIU marine science team. The EVA was just over 4 hours, and they did everything from reef exploration to identify specific species...

July 23, 2016
Jul 23

Mission Day 3: It Takes a Village

Dawn Kernagis

For each of the 6 crew members, there are around a dozen or so research and support team members - at a minimum - that make a mission like NEEMO move forward successfully and productively. With so many operational objectives embedded...

Jul 23

Mission Day 2: Life Aquatic

Dawn Kernagis

It's official! As of 10:28 AM ET on Mission Day 2, Reid Wiseman, Megan Behnken, Marc O'Griofa, and Matthias Maurer are officially Aquanauts after having lived underwater for 24 hours. On that note, both Megan and Reid are now the 49th...

July 21, 2016
Jul 21

Mission Day 1: Splash Down!

Dawn Kernagis

...and we're off! NEEMO 21 splashed down today at 10:28 AM ET. Even with grumbling skies and a few downpours, the crew was ecstatic to hop on the boat and head out to the Aquarius habitat after a 3-day weather delay. After a...

July 17, 2016
Jul 17

Countdown to Splash Down

Dawn Kernagis

Training week is a wrap! The crew spent Training Days 5 and 6 immersed (literally and figuratively) in learning more about the science objectives and related procedures for the mission. On Thursday, we headed out to a dive site known as...

July 13, 2016
Jul 13

Topside, this is Green Diver

Dawn Kernagis

As mentioned in the previous post, a major part of our crew training week has been learning how to dive the Kirby Morgan Stainless Steel 37, which is a helmet used for surface supplied diving. With this helmet, we...

July 11, 2016
Jul 11

NEEMO 21 Crew Training Begins!

Dawn Kernagis

The fun begins! During June 2016, the NEEMO 21 crew underwent their first round of crew training at Johnson Space Center. In addition to reviewing mission protocol, objectives, and safety, we specifically trained on numerous mission science objectives, including vestibular function...

July 6, 2016
Jul 06

Welcome to NEEMO 21!

Dawn Kernagis

Dive! Dive! Dive! This is Dawn Kernagis, IHMC Research Scientist and host of STEM-Talk, and I am absolutely thrilled and honored to join the 21st mission of NASA's undersea analog, NEEMO (NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operations), as both a...