What is an analog mission?

Orpheus Mission, EVA, fot. M. Baraniecki

“An Analog Mission is a research method focused on investigating one or several aspects of crewed space missions using earthly real-life situations as an analogue to an off-world scenario.”

Leszek Orzechowski - LunAres Research Station’s Director

What is an Analog Mission - short answer: research and an intense, unique experience – highly recommended for anyone – not only for researchers. Space enthusiasts, popular science journalists, designers, engineers and many others, are not only suitable for such an adventure but also essential in terms of diversity of the crew, in terms of point-of-view, problem-solving, character.

Currently, analog missions are being organized by space agencies as well as private entities and researchers. Recent examples of NASA or ESA establishing partnerships with private companies related to commercial rocket launching or satellite communication systems are showing how the private sector capacity and faster working process is beneficial for governmental agencies. Currently, it is the commercialization that is encouraging private entities to invest and work on R&D projects developing human space exploration. Private analog research stations, such as LunAres, can serve researchers and institutions as an international platform for global network building.

Scientific simulation provides the researchers and technology developers, with adequate conditions for testing or studying. Depending on the research purpose, the required environment ensures various controlled and recurring conditions and data for comparison. The analog missions can be sufficient for Technology Readiness Level (TRL method developed by NASA in 1970s) determination up to level 6-7, depending on the product specifications.

From our experience aside from immense value for scientists, analog mission is also a meaningful and sometimes an intense experience for its participants. Often LunAres Analog Missions require participating in many activities and experiments that are challenging, exhausting on the one side and boresome and trivial on the other. Living together with five strangers in a limited space could sound easy but it becomes harder over the span of the isolation. This experience can alter the participant’s perspectives and help discover new vocations and passions. It is definitely a challenge that requires someone to leave their safe zones and encourages reevaluating some aspects of one’s life.
Orpheus Mission, crew, fot. M. Baraniecki
What is an analog mission?

What is an anlog habitat?

Analog habitat is a space adapted or designed to support analog missions and add more simulation and testing capabilities.

LunAres Research Station is a facility focused on isolation and testing EVA procedures. It trades extreme environment of deserts, poles and volcanos for control over the simulated environment and its inhabitants. It is a laboratory for methodic data collection in human-centred studies and habitation technologies development.
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Who is analog astronaut?

What is an analog mission?
What is an analog mission?
Analog astronaut is an individual that decided to play the role of astronaut during a simulated crewed mission. Depending on the study and environment a different requirement could be applied for a candidate for analog astronaut. There is a growing international community of analog astronauts focused on helping humanity prepare for any future scenario of crewed space exploration.

Inside LunAres we are ready to consider the application of any individual that is older than 20 years, is healthy and has no contagious diseases. It is research – not astronaut training.
For participating in the LunAres analog astronaut program you can be a student, a corporate employee, an artist, a researcher, an adventurer, a traveller, a journalist, an engineer, a retired person, a person with movement imparities or other physical disabilities, etc.

analog missions in publications - bibliography