A personal communication platform for sparking excitement, conversations, and happy reflections in relationships between Mars and Earth.

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The Problem

In comparison to the nearly negligible time delay between Earth and the ISS, deep space exploration missions will no longer have access to dynamic communication between ground and space due to the 40-minute latency.

However, during these trying three years, communication with loved ones will be critical for combatting the unique psychological stresses of spaceflight. Our partners at the NASA Ames HCI group tasked us with exploring how to maintain these important communication channels with those our astronauts love the most.

How might we support meaningful communications between astronauts on Mars and the people they care about on Earth?

Our Research Process

As HCI practitioners, we dedicated much time into understanding the problem space and our users. We approached this research through several different streams, including stakeholder interviews, a diary study, secondary research, and speculative experiments.

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Our Solution

To address some of the pain-points we uncovered from our research, we created Spark: a personal communication platform centered around sparking novelty, conversation, and reflection in the relationships that matter the most.

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Who We Are

We're a group of 5 HCI Master students from Carnegie Mellon University. From research, to engineering, to design, each of us brings a unique perspective and expertise to the team. Find out more about each of us here.

Meet the Team