Monday, October 16, 2017

Prabhu Victor, Mission 4 Commander

My name is Prabhu Victor, I am one of the three crew members for Mission IV as well as the mission commander. I'm originally from India but I lived in Eden Prairie, Minnesota for about 16 years. I am currently pursuing a Master of Science in Space Studies. I received my Bachelor degree from UND in Electrical Engineering from UND. My tasks in this mission involve reporting back to Dr. DeLeon about the status of the mission as well as oversee the completion of mission objectives.

I was very interested in doing this mission because it was one of the reasons I noticed the Space Studies department at UND. I was also interested because I wanted to see my reaction to a confined/isolated environment. It's a new experience and I wanted to learn how it would affect me physically and mentally. To keep track of my mental state I'm writing a journal noting down any out of the ordinary emotions or thoughts throughout the mission. Another main reason I wanted to be involved in this mission is because I helped Dr. DeLeon with the construction of the two additional modules over Summer 2017 along with Nanette Valentour and Stefan Tomovic. I made some improvements in the core module, as well as help assemble the EVA and plant modules. I wanted to evaluate the functionality of the current habitat with the two modules and note any improvements that can be made for future missions. Besides that, I will focus and look into team dynamics and individual time management of the crew during this mission.

I wanted to focus on team dynamics because I was made mission commander. I've had the good luck to work with Joseph and Stefan before this mission. I know all three of us work well together to complete small tasks. But now, we get the chance to work together for 14 entire days! It has already been interesting to see how we work through each task through completion and talk about how we can improve things for the future. I'll be taking note of how the morale will change as we spend more time together in a confined environment. I'm interested in seeing how team dynamics change based on the different EVA's we complete as well. I believe this could help in learning about variables that could increase or decrease stress in confined environments and help improve team morale for future missions.

I'm also interested in learning how each crew member including me, manage their time and how that affects our moods. For example, I want to see how I feel after working on just tasks and psych tests required for this mission vs. breaking up the time to work on my own projects between the required tasks. It'll be interesting to see how working with the plants affects the crew member's mood before taking on other tasks. I also want to see how our level of activity throughout the day affect our energy levels and moods.

These aspects of the mission are just a fraction of the things that could be studied during these missions in the habitat. I do think they will help future missions as well give me insights into my own personality and how I deal with certain issues. I am grateful to be given this opportunity and will provide future posts on how Mission 4 of the Inflatable Mars/Lunar Analog Habitat is progressing. Thanks for reading! If you have any suggestions or questions about the mission feel free to email me at


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