Undergoing preparations for the sighting of the lunar eclipse on July 28, 2018 – Egypt Today photo
CAIRO - 2August 2018:Coinciding with the longest lunar eclipse in the 21st century, Egyptian Adventurer and entrepreneur Omar Samra joined a group of international analogue astronauts to participate in a unique lunar analogue mission in Pila, Poland.
The crew carried out numerous experiments and studies to provide insights into the spectrum of human traits essential for future lunar settlement; as well as to further the advancement of space exploration and science during 15 days in total isolation.
The crew, who named their team SPECTRA, hail from Australia, Canada, Egypt, Romania, and the USA. Samra said: "I feel privileged to have been selected among this group of talented scientists, engineers, artists and aspiring astronauts, and to represent Egypt in humanity’s quest to improve how we survive and thrive during future long duration space missions."
The team conducted various tests to analyze shifts in microbial population of the habitat and the crew, in order to understand existing challenges and optimize for a healthier environment. The research lays the foundation for a broader body of work that aims to suggest best practices for future space missions.
Samra’s responsibilities during the mission included growing Egyptian arugula and red radish micro-greens in the habitat's BioLab.
He was responsible for the crew's physical performance research, which aimed at understanding how astronauts can work and live better in space. This entailed an overall physical fitness and dietary plan,organizing a series of workouts to ensure the crew stayed healthy and active throughout the mission given the limitations of space in the habitat and the often sedentary nature of research work. He also curated lunar Olympics and cultural events to bring the crew closer together.
Millions in Egypt and the Arab world witnessed a long lunar eclipse onFriday. The moon passed through all stages of the eclipse from beginning to end.
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