Haughton-Mars Project History
1996. The National Research Council (NRC) of the US National Academy of Sciences and NASA Ames Research Center (ARC) approve a postdoctoral reseacrh proposal by Pascal Lee, a graduate student at Cornell University, to study the Haughton Crater site as a potential Mars analog.
1997. Pascal Lee joins NASA ARC as an NRC Research Associate with Chris. P. McKay and A. Zent as advisers. An initial Haughton-Mars Project research team, HMP-97, is formed. It includes researchers from NASA ARC and the Geological Survey of Canada. Four team members (Lee, Rice, Schutt, Zent) visit Haughton in August, 1997 and confirm the good potential of the site for Mars analog studies.
1998. The scientific field work at Haughton is viewed as an opportunity to carry out additional research exploration technologies and strategies for future robotic and human missions to Mars. On HMP-98, twenty-four team members from NASA ARC, JSC, KSC and several research institutions and universities in the US and Canada visit Haughton to do Science (geology, biology, remote-sensing) and Exploration Research (ground-penetrating radar surveys, field spectrometry, stereo camera tests, permafrost drilling, robotic helicopter tests, human exploration metrics). The National Geographic Society contributes a first grant to the program.
1999. The Haughton-Mars research program expands. On HMP-99, forty team members from NASA, the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), the Russian Institute for Space Reseach (IKI), several other research institutions and universities in the US, Canada and the UK, the US Marine Corps, and the Mars Society join for research at Haughton Crater. After HM-99, NASA ARC formally establishes the NASA Haughton-Mars Project (HMP). Dr. Pascal Lee is Principal Investigator (P.I.). Dr. Kelly Snook (NASA ARC) is appointed HMP Project Manager.
2000. The HMP-2000 field season is the busiest ever. Close to 100 participants come to the field. The US Marines provide instrumental support in air delivery operations. Possible analogs for recent gullies reported on Mars are identified on Devon. The first field trials of the Hamilton-Sundstrand advanced planetary exploration concept spacesuit take place. The Flashline Mars Arctic Research Station (FMARS) contributed to the HMP by the Mars Society is successfully deployed. Kawasaki donates 4 ATVs in support of the HMP. Canadian Geographic produces Mars On Earth, a 1-hour documentary on the HMP which airs in Canada on Jan 4, 2001.
2001. The SETI Institute takes on HMP project management. P. Lee serves as HMP Project Lead and Principal Investigator. Over 70 participants take part in the field season. Olympus donates an epifluorescence microscope to the HMP allowing in-depth in situ analysis (petrography and endolithic microbiology). Wearable computers donated to the HMP by Xybernaut are successfully tested in the Hamilton-Sundstrand concept spacesuit. Carnegie Mellon University's Robotics Institute deploys the Hyperion sun-synchronous rover on a several km-long autonomous traverse. The FMARS is occupied by six crews, each comprising 5 to 7 members occupying the station for 4 to 10 days. DARPA portable robots are deployed in support of exploration activities. Kawasaki donates 3 ATVs. A 2-person rover is tested in comparative studies with single-person ATVs. Discovery Channel USA produces Surviving Mars, a 2-hour documentary on the FMARS which airs in the US on Nov 7, 2001. Discovery Canada produces A Bridge To Mars, a 1-hr documentary on the HMP which airs in Canada on Feb 7, 2002 .