Focus on Technology
Wed July 17, 2013
Would you go to Mars?
Ten years from now a crew of four people may just be getting used to the Red Planet. Eventually up to 40 people could populate a colony on Mars. Would you go?
The Mars One Project is the brainchild of Arno Wielders, a planetary scientist and Bas Lansdorp who is handling the financing. So why would anyone want to go and stay? Physiological changes in the human body after a stay on Mars prevent people from coming back. Mars One's Editorial Manager Aashima Dogra says why wouldn't you want to go?
"It's the logical next step for us and you know, this kind of exploding and spreading out is what humans have always done. So it's really no surprise. Not doing it would be odd."
Seventy-eight thousand people filled out online applications just two weeks after Mars One had its April 22nd launch. Here is a sampling of the one minute videos people have to provide. William repairs computer and says he has always liked space and science fiction. Catherine says she is anxious to look up at the stars and see the universe from a different perspective and Randy says the rewards would be incredible and participants would go down in history.
Here's the plan:
- In 2016 a communication satellite and a supply mission will be sent to Mars
- In 2018 a large planetary rover will be sent to Mars. It will scout out a location for the settlement
- In 2020 living units, a rover and more supplies will be sent. They will extract the inflatable section from the life-support unit and prepare the outpost for the arrival of the humans
Ultimately 40 people will settle on Mars. Mars One says teams of four will be sent every two years. The world will pick participants on a reality TV show.
And in case you think this mission is all hype and no science, think again. Mars One says it has letters from private space companies all over the world offering to built the parts it will take.
The first Mars One crew will depart in September 2022 and arrive seven months later in April 2023.