Skip to comments.NASA Flight Director, His Family Switch Over To ‘Mars Time’ After Curiosity Landing
Posted on 08/19/2012 6:03:20 PM PDT by BenLurkin
Since the landing of NASAs newest Mars rover, flight director David Ohs family has taken the unusual step of tagging along as he leaves Earth time behind and syncs his body clock with the red planet.
Every mission to Mars, a small army of scientists and engineers reports to duty on Mars time for the first three months. But its almost unheard of for an entire family to flip their orderly lives upside down, shifting to what amounts to a time zone change a day.
Intrigued about abiding by extraterrestrial time, Ohs wife, Bryn, could not pass up the chance to take their kids 13-year-old Braden, 10-year-old Ashlyn and 8-year-old Devyn on a Martian adventure from their home near the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory where the Curiosity rover was built.
We all feel a little sleepy, a little jet-lagged all day long, but everyone is doing great, Bryn Oh said, two weeks into the experiment.
Days on Mars last a tad longer. Earth rotates on its axis once every 24 hours the definition of a day. Neighbor Mars spins more lazily. Days there known as sols last 39 minutes and 35 seconds longer than on Earth. The difference may not seem like much each day, but it adds up.
To stay in lockstep, nearly 800 people on the $2.5 billion project have surrendered to the Martian cycle of light and dark. In the simplest sense, each day slides forward 40 minutes. That results in wacky work, sleep and eating schedules. Many say it feels like perpetual jet lag.
The Oh family broke in slowly. A sign on their front door warns: On Mars Time: Flight Director Asleep. Come Back Later.
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Makes sense really.
I’ve worked in factories that had their clocks offset by 15 minutes and ended up living on that time.
Yeah, but wouldn’t he suffer from ‘rocket lag’?
Morning people are usually geared towards a 24- hour cycle.
It seems entirely arbitrary and abusive to drag them into what is clearly just their father's work schedule.
When will they be hearing from CPS?
So happy hour on Mars would be like......how many minutes in an hour?.......30?......30 minutes has an hour, April, June and Mars......all the rest have 31......the Beatles had 8days a week......and if it’s leap year then you spring forward an hour?.....and time disappears in a black hole?.....time can disappear in a black Russian too......
It all depends on how many pancakes to shingle a doghouse.
It’s Five O’Clock somewhere.
I don’t see what’s so stressful about sleeping in an additional 40 minutes every single day, except when you have to interact with the outside world, e.g. business hours, and of course who’s still on American Idol. Come to think of it, I wish the days were about 26 hours long - then I could sleep in 2 hours every day.
They might be home schooled.
Too bad the family doesn’t consider homeschooling the kids while they’re doing their Mars Time experiment! Just think how much more time they’d have for learning if they’re not stuck in a classroom all day!