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Health and Recreation Team

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Martian Environment and Challenges

Humans need to keep physically fit to help resist disease and infection. Exercise is important in maintaining physical strength and endurance. Leisure activities help keep up mentally alert and emotionally healthy. Living in the Marsville colony for long periods of time will be very stressful. The colonists may have to work for long hours with little sleep. It will be important that the colonists have a way to relax.

Procedures must be in place to deal with things like boredom, fatigue, and loss of minerals and muscle tone. There must be facilities for recreational activities. The inhabitants of Marsville will need a visually appealing environment that provides privacy and relaxation. These should be included in the overall plan.

The Marsville colony is a science and technology centre. Healthy colonists are critical to the success of the mission so health services must be considered. Crew members will be on duty every day. One sick or injured crew member will restrict the colony. The goal will be to prevent sickness by promoting health but you must still deal with emergency situations. Health maintenance should include medical check-ups, health monitoring and routine and emergency treatment.


Your team is responsible for designing and building a working prototype (model) of a health and recreation system for the Marsville colony. Your system design will need to take into account:

  • The various leisure and exercise needs of the entire colony.
  • Space limitations.
  • The atmospheric conditions on Mars and how they will affect your designs.
  • The needs and interests of many different cultures in the colony.
  • Facilities needed for routine medical check-ups, which could be self-monitored by the colonist.
  • Facilities needed for emergency surgery.

Use the Team Blog to consult with the other teams. You should consult with the temperature control and energy teams to make sure that your environment will be adequately serviced.

Getting Started

  • Define the requirements of your system.
  • Examine how these are currently met on Earth.
  • Explore the limitations/opportunities of the Martian environment.
  • Gather feedback from other teams and mentors using the Team Blog.
  • Design and construct your working prototype using the requirements listed below.
  • Evaluate the design. Does it provide the greatest good and the least harm to the persons and things affected?
  • View the Health and Recreation Tips to learn more.

System Requirements

  • System model must be no larger than 1 metre x 1 metre x 1 metre.
  • It must include a working component such as an electrical switch to turn a fan on and off or doors that open and close using a simple hydraulic system.
  • Prototype must incorporate at least four Mars facts.
  • Materials used should be as representative as possible of the materials that would be used for the real design.
  • System should work under the conditions of the Martian environment.
  • System should operate with other life-support systems within the colony.

Questions to Ask

  • What value does entertainment have?
  • What forms of entertainment could be considered for the settlement?
  • What features of the environment do these forms of entertainment depend upon?
  • What are the effects on the body of living in a microgravity environment for long periods of time?
  • How will you simulate these effects in order to test your systems on Earth?
  • Why would it be important to have suitable exercise facilities in Marsville?
  • How can the Mir Space Station research assist in your overall plans?
  • What forms of energy will be required for your health and recreation facility?
  • Which parts of the facility might require different temperature controls and why?
  • What materials can you use to make prototypes of your system?
  • Who could you contact to get further information about your topic?