jump mark

Morocco 2013 Mars Analog Field Simulation

Ibn Battuta center supports Morrocco Mars simulation

Between 01 - 28. February 2013, the Austrian Space Forum – in partnership with the Ibn Battuta Center in Marrakesh - conducted an integrated Mars analog field simulation in the northern Sahara near Erfoud, Morocco in the framework of the PolAres research programme. Directed by a Mission Support Center in Austria, a small field crew conducted experiments preparing for future human Mars missions mainly in the fields of engineering, planetary surface operations, astrobiology, geophysics/geology, life sciences and other.

Thumbnail MARS2013 Mission Report Download
MARS2013 Mission report

(8.77 MB pdf)


MARS2013 Science Workshop, 25-26 May 2013


MARS2013 Science Workshop Poster

The MARS2013 Analog Expedition in Morocco generated an enormous amount of valuable data. During the MARS2013 Science workshop discussed the efficient exploitation of the data and coordination of the analysis.

The workshop was hosted by the Technical University Vienna, Main building, Karlsplatz 13, 1040 Vienna, Austria. Cupola seminar room, Stair (Stiege) 1, top floor, from Saturday, 25th May 2013, 09:00 a.m - Sunday, 26th May 2013, 4:00 p.m.
A network meeting on Friday 24th May, 02:00 - 05:00 p.m (invitation only) concluded the program.

Saturday, 25th May 2013 09:00 a.m. - 07:00 p.m Session
Saturday, 25th May 2013 at 07:00 p.m. Conference dinner
Sunday, 26th May 2013 09:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Session
Full Programme (pdf, 204.4 KB)

This workshop was supported by the Austrian Ministry for Science and Research.

Learn more about MARS2013 simulation


Experiment Organization Description
CLIFFBOT CRV Association Planete Mars, FR Cliffbot rover vehicle - terrain trafficability
COMPSTRESS Crew Fatigue Med.Univ. Graz, AT, Kings College, UK Sensorimotor Adaptation & Stress Physiology in
ERAS C3 MS Italy, IT Command & Control software project for data processing in the field
SREC Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Cognitique, Institut Polytechnique de Bordeaux, FR Assessement of small rover exploration capabilities (ATV-like vehicles)
DELTA Austrian Space Forum, AT Human factors - work economics, time delay A.X vs unsuited
Puli-Rover Puli Space Tech, HU Mobility tests for the Hungarian GLXP rover
Hunveyor-4 Eötvös Loránd University Budapest, HU Surveyor-class robotic lander with remote access
LTMS-MOROCCO CSEM, CH Long term medical monitoring system, biomedical chest vest
Magma-White Rover ABM Space, PL Pathfinder-class rover system, mobility & human-robotic interaction
MEDIAN Univ. College London, UK Methane Detection by In-Situ Analysis with Nano-Landers
microEVA NASA JPL, USA Luminescence detection of viable bacterial spores and terbium microspheres
Deployable Shelter TU Vienna, AT Deployable Emergency Shelter suitcase for astronauts
PolAres programme-specific activities
Aouda.X/.S Austrian Space Forum, AT Series of engineering tests w.r.t. communication, trafficability and materials
MAT/EP Medical University of Innsbruck, AT routine medical survey during OEWF field campaigns; includes a field incident reporting system
Geosciences University of Budapest, HU
University Innsbruck, AT
Geoscience remote science support experiments; includes the management of all geophysical and astrobiological research activities.
ANTIPODES Kiwispace, NZ Communication experiment with Kiwispace, NZ – testing the experiment guidance over to an external Mission Support Center during an ongoing experiment.
Complimentary experiments
Peniculus University of Innsbruck, AT A student experiment, devised at the University of Innsbruck during the summer 2012 "Unicamp". One solar panel will be swept by a brush once a day, whereas the other will accumulate a fine layer of dust.
Distance measurement "Yellow Box" FH Mittweida Using a high frequency signal emited by a base station, the signal travel time is measured to calculate the distance to the receiver. This could be used for a triangulation method to determine the location of a field unit.
OPS Box "White" Intarsico Design The classical base station for receiving the telemetry of the Aouda spacesuits has been expanded by an ergonomic design variant.

Mission Support Center

Flight Control Room of the Mission Support Center

The Mission Support Center (MSC) is located in Innsbruck, Austria and will support the Mars simulation in Morocco.

The MSC is led by the Flight Director. He is supported by the Flight Director Assistent. The Flight Directors for MARS2013 are: Norbert Frischauf, Christoph Ragonig and Alexander Soucek. In the back offices of the MSC there are following teams:

  • Media team (Team lead: Monika Fischer)
  • Flight planning team (Team lead: Alexander Karl)
  • Remote Science Support team (Team lead: Mike Rampey)
  • Biomedical Engineers (Team lead: Thomas Luger)
  • Science data officers (Team lead: Roberta Paternesi)
  • IT team (Team lead: Harald Fuchs)
  • Ground Support team (Team lead: Arnold Sams)

Field Campaign Partners

Campaign lead

  • Austrian Space Forum (OeWF)
Logistics, Infrastructure
  • Austrian Embassy in Morocco
  • Ibn Battuta Center, Marrakesh, Morocco
  • Int'l Research School of Planetary Sciences, Universita d'Annunzio, Italy
  • Université Cadi Ayyad, Bd. du Prince Moulay Abdellah, Marrakesh, Morocco
Industrial Partners & Sponsors (financial and technical contributions)
  • Alpquell (water), Austria
  • BusinessCom (High Bandwidth Satellite service provider), UK
  • Dräger Safety Austria (infrared cameras)
  • GourmetGroup (catering), Austria
  • Fair Rescue International (expedition gear), Austria
  • Intarsico Moebelkonzepte (experimental OPS console), Austria
  • Ing. Herbert Albrecht Memorial Fund for the Advancement of Science and Technology, Austria
  • LANCOM (wireless long-range telemetry hardware), Germany
  • Motorola Solutions (TETRA-network), Austria
  • Space Applications Services (Belgium)
  • TECHOS (hardware safety assessment), Germany
  • T-Mobile Austria (4G/LTE network)
  • Tripan Leichtbauteile (advanced honeycomb materials for structures), Austria

 team members from 23 nations involved in MARS2013

Scientific Partners
  • ABM Space Education & Mars Society Poland
  • Association Planète Mars, France
  • Centre Suisse d’Electronique et de Microtechnique SA, Switzerland
  • Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Cognitique, Institut Polytechnique de Bordeaux, France
  • Instituts für Prozess- und Partikeltechnik, Technical University of Graz
  • Italian Mars Society
  • Kiwispace Foudation, New Zealand
  • Medical University of Graz, Austria
  • Medical University Innsbruck, Austria
  • NASA Ames Research Center, USA
  • NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, USA
  • Óbuda University, Alba Regia University Centre, Hungary
  • Puli Space Technologies, Hungary
  • Technical University of Vienna, Austria
  • University College London, United Kingdom
  • University of Innsbruck, Faculty for Biology / Institute for Ecology and Limnlogy
  • University of Vienna, Faculty for Chemistry and Faculty of Physics
Social Media Partner
  • HootSuite, Canada

MARS2013 Press pictures

Photos are free-of-charge, if the copyright is used correctly and completely.


Mars2013 has officially begun. L. Foresta.
& D. Schildhammer during their
first EVA in Morocco.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 564.8 KB)


Aouda.X Mars space suit simulator standing
on a Kess Kess formation in Morocco.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 4.6 MB)


After successful EVA (Extra-Vehicular-
Activity) the Analog-Astronaut returns
to base camp.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 3.7 MB)


With the ATV (All-terrain-vehicles) an
Analog-Astronaut can extend the exploration
area. Moreover the ATV's are part
of the SREC experiment.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 3.8 MB)


Daniel Schildhammer inside Aouda.X (le)
and Luca Foresta inside Aouda.S (ri)
Mars spacesuit simulator.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 2.1 MB)


Daniel Schildhammer lowers the Cliffbot
over some steep cliffs of the
Kess Kess formations.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 6.1 MB)


Both Mars spacesuit simulators are testing
the deployable shelter, which was
developed by TU Vienna for emergency cases.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 5.1 MB)


Taking samples for the geoscience
experiment. Before taking the sample the
Analog-Astronaut describes the formation
and takes photos.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 6.4 MB)


Aouda.X Mars spacesuit together with
MAGMA Whiterover during sunset. The
Life experiment of the University of Innsbruck
is attached to the rover.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 3.6 MB)


Placing the MEDIAN gas detectors.
With this concept we try to detect
Methane Gas in small amounts.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 1.1 MB)


Hungarian Google Lunar X-Prize Rover
Puli together with Aouda.X Mars spacesuit.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 4 MB)


Hunveyor is an additional Hungarian
experiment. The lander is also a
weather station & collects important
weather data for MEDIAN experiment.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 4.5 MB)


MARS2013 Camp in the Moroccan
Northern Sahara just after sunset.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 3.6 MB)


Flight Control room of the
Mission Support Center in Innsbruck.
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 3.6 MB)


OPS White Seat an experimental
furniture concept developed for MARS2013
simulation. Doctor Pavan Gorur monitors
biomedical data from this console
(c) OeWF (Katja Zanella-Kux)
download (jpg, 316.2 KB)

MARS2013 Blog News

Taylor's Thesis Cover

Wed, 24 September 2014

Wearing the Aouda.X is Hard Work!

Follow on Twitter