The purpose of HI-SEAS MISSION I was to address the IRP Gap: ‘Risks associated with an inadequate food system’. The overall objective of campaign was to compare the resource costs and the nutritional and psychosocial benefits of two food systems proposed for long-term space missions: prepackaged “instant” food, and foods prepared by the crew from shelf stable, bulk packaged ingredients. The dietary study tracked crew satisfaction with their diet, which was composed exclusively from instant meals or meals prepared from shelf-stable ingredients. The resource-utilization study tracked crew use of power, water, food and supplies over the mission. This was a 4 month mission conducted in early 2013.


Simon Engler is the research assistant for HI-SEAS and a PhD student in Computer Science at the University of Hawaii on Manoa Campus. Simon was the Crew Engineer for HI-SEAS Mission 1 and spent four months living inside the dome. He conducts research in robotics, human-robot interaction, and is currently designing mathematical models predicting energy consumption in the habitat. Simon obtained his BSc in Astrophysics & Mathematics in 2001 from St. Mary’s University. He also worked/studied as a scientific programmer at the University of Amsterdam in the Center for Computational Sciences until 2003.  In 2006 Simon joined the Canadian Armed Forces and served with 1 Combat Engineer Regiment for five years. He served a ten month combat tour in 2009 where in addition to his regular duties he built and tested a robotic platform. The robotic platform is now on display at the Military Museum in Calgary. He then enrolled a MSc robotics program at the Schulich School of Engineering at the University of Calgary. Simon participated in an internship at the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University helping with Zoe, the first Astrobiological robot prototype being designed for a mission on Mars. Simon enjoys hiking on the Hawaiian trails, snorkeling, and sailing his 37′ Rafiki Cutter sailboat.  (more information)

Dr. Sian Proctor is a geology professor at South Mountain Community College in Phoenix, Arizona. Throughout her adult life she has pushed herself to take on new challenges and to learn  new things that she can bring back into the classroom. She has a B.S. in environmental science, M.S. in geology, and a Ph.D. in science education. Both her masters and Ph.D. research involved the use of technology and understanding how individuals learn. She is continually developing new ways to engage her students and to present scientific information in interesting ways. She has a strong curriculum development background, has traveled and taught around the world, was a finalist for the 2009 NASA Astronaut Program, and was on the Discovery Channel reality TV show called The Colony. Sian’s experiences on The Colony taught her how to live in a unique environment with limited resources. She believes in life-long learning and tries to instill this mentality with her students. The goal of the Education Outreach Program is to document and disseminate to the general population the HI-SEAS research projects occurring during the two week MDRS mission and the four-month mission in Hawaii. Research projects will be documented using both video and photo cameras. Crew interviews will also be conducted. Media will be disseminated on a daily bases via the HI-SEAS website ( and through social media such as Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

Kate Greene is a San Francisco-based science and technology journalist. Her work has appeared in Discover magazine, The EconomistU.S. News & World Report, Popular Mechanics, and Technology Review, among others. She covers topics that range from user-interface design and nanotube transistors to open-heart surgery and human factors in space flight. Her forthcoming book, Reality Mining: Using Big Data to Engineer a Better World, is co-authored with entrepreneur Nathan Eagle and will be published by MIT Press. Kate speaks at technology conferences and in 2011 was a visiting lecturer at Vanderbilt University. As an amateur filmmaker, she has produced short films, two of which screened at the San Francisco 48-hour Film Festival in 2008 and 2009. In 2008, she presented a prototype fiber-optic light pipe at the Bay Area Maker Faire. The light-pipe project was featured on Current TV and in the San Francisco Chronicle. Before she became a writer, Kate earned a B.S. in chemistry and an M.S. in physics, with a focus on mid-infrared lasers and LEDs. Her research has been presented at conferences and published in the Journal of Computational Chemistry and the Journal of Applied Physics. In her free time, Kate plays volleyball, competes in triathlons, and swims in large open bodies of water. She is a native of Kansas where the state motto is ad astra per aspera, “to the stars through difficulty.” You can learn more about Kate at her website,

Dr. Oleg Abramov was born January 1978 in St. Petersburg, Russia, and grew up in Brooklyn, NY. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Biology from Clarkson University (1998) and a doctorate in Planetary Sciences Planetary Sciences, with a minor in Molecular and Cell Biology, from the University of Arizona (2006). After earning his Ph.D., Dr. Abramov held a Postdoctoral Researcher position at the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, CO in 2006-2007, was a NASA Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Colorado from 2007 to 2010, and a Urey Fellow at the Lunar and Planetary Institute in Houston, TX, in 2010-2011. Dr. Abramov is currently a Research Space Scientist at the U.S. Geological Survey Astrogeology branch in Flagstaff, AZ. He is conducting several research programs, including laboratory studies of lunar zircons, field investigations of ancient terrains on Earth, thermal modeling of impact craters, and studies of Enceladus and Europa using analysis of data from the Cassini and Galileo missions. Dr. Abramov performs frequent field work at remote locations that included arctic Canada and the Australian outback, is a certified Wilderness First Responder, and has previous experience in a simulated Mars habitat (Mars Desert Research Station). He is a commercial pilot and flight instructor and enjoys skydiving, SCUBA diving, rock climbing, distance running, backpacking, skiing, and whitewater kayaking.

Dr. Yajaira Sierra-Sastre is a materials scientist and educator with ten years of research experience in academic, federal, and private institutions.  Yajaira received her BS degree in chemistry and teacher’s certification from the University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez.  After college she returned to her hometown Arroyo and taught chemistry at her former high school.  At the end of the academic year, Yajaira was awarded a summer research fellowship for teachers at Stanford University.  There she discovered her passion for nanotechnology and returned home to work at the NASA Research Center for Advanced Nanoscale Materials at the University of Puerto Rico-Río Piedras, where she investigated materials for space applications.  After gaining valuable research experience, Yajaira decided to pursue graduate studies at Cornell University and obtained a PhD in nanomaterials chemistry in 2009.  As part of her doctoral thesis, Dr. Sierra-Sastre worked as a researcher at Los Alamos National Laboratory.  Upon graduation, she joined a nanotechnology start-up company where she developed coating processes for multinational clients in the military, environment, medical diagnostics, and textile sectors.]



Angelo Vermeulen is a biologist, space researcher, filmmaker, visual artist, community organizer, and author. His original PhD training in ecology, environmental pollution and teratology plays a crucial role in his art. Vermeulen creates art/science installations that are often open, experimental setups that incorporate ecological processes and living organisms. ‘Biomodd’ is Vermeulen’s most well-known and longest running project. It is a worldwide series of crosscultural, symbiotic installations in which ecology, computing, and social interaction converge. In 2009 he launched ‘Space Ecologies Art and Design (SEAD)’, a platform for artistic research on
the architectures and ethics of space colonization. He collaborates with the MELiSSA life support research program of the European Space Agency (ESA), and is also a member of ESA’s Arts & Science Topical Team. In 2011 his space-related work lead him to start a PhD on space habitation at Delft University of Technology. He co-authored the book ‘Baudelaire in Cyberspace: Dialogues on Art, Science and Digital Culture’ with philosopher Antoon Van den Braembussche, and gives talks about his work around the world. He is a Lecturer at Sint-Lucas Visual Arts Ghent in Belgium, a 2010 TED Fellow, and a 2012 Michael Kalil Endowment for Smart Design Fellow at Parsons in New York. His art works have been exhibited in the US, Europe, Southeast Asia and New Zealand.