Rapid Microbial Analysis during Simulated Surface EVA at Meteor Crater: Implications for Human Exploration of the Moon and Mars 2006-01-2006
Procedures for rapid microbiological analysis were performed during simulated surface extra-vehicular activity (EVA) at Meteor Crater, Arizona. The fully suited operator swabbed rock (‘unknown’ sample), spacesuit glove (contamination control) and air (negative control). Each swab sample was analyzed for lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and β-1, 3-glucan within 10 minutes by the handheld LOCAD PTS instrument, scheduled for flight to ISS on space shuttle STS-116. This simulated a rapid and preliminary ‘life detection’ test (with contamination control) that a human could perform on Mars. Eight techniques were also evaluated for their ability to clean and remove LPS and β-1, 3-glucan from five surface materials of the EVA Mobility Unit (EMU). While chemical/mechanical techniques were effective at cleaning smooth surfaces (e.g. RTV silicon), they were less so with porous fabrics (e.g. TMG gauntlet). UVC radiation (without mechanical agitation) proved ineffective at removing LPS and β-1, 3-glucan from any surface.
Citation: Maule, J., Steele, A., Wainwright, N., Child, A. et al., "Rapid Microbial Analysis during Simulated Surface EVA at Meteor Crater: Implications for Human Exploration of the Moon and Mars," SAE Technical Paper 2006-01-2006, 2006, https://doi.org/10.4271/2006-01-2006. Download Citation
Jake Maule, Andrew Steele, Norman Wainwright, Alice Child, Ginger Flores, Lisa Monaco, Dan Burbank, Dean Eppler, Joseph Kosmo, Amy Ross, David Graziosi, Keith Splawn
Carnegie Institution of Washington, NASA Johnson Space Center, ILC
International Conference On Environmental Systems