Mars Landers, April 2023
Dream of going to space but don’t feel like putting in the work to become a NASA astronaut? Here’s your chance to possibly make that fantasy come true. Mars One, a Netherlands-based nonprofit, is seeking volunteers to help colonize the Red Planet, according to Mashable.
To meet an aggressive goal of putting people on Mars by 2023, Mars One released its basic astronaut requirements on January 8. Rather than recruiting scientists or pilots, the organization says it will consider anyone, so long as they are at least 18 years old. Intelligence, good mental and physical health and dedication to the project are all pluses. Chosen candidates will undergo eight years of training prior to the launch.
“We are more concerned with how well each astronaut works and lives with the others, in the long journey from Earth to Mars and for a lifetime of challenges ahead,” the company founder, Norbert Kraft, said.
To prepare for the colony, Mars One plans to launch robotic cargo missions between 2016 and 2021. The robots will get busy assembling an outpost ahead of the space explorers’ arrival. Four humans will first land on Mars in 2023, followed by another group every two years following the trailblazers’ arrival. No human has ever gone to Mars or traveled that far, and the journey is expected to take seven months.
Mars One plans to fund their endeavors largely through a global reality television event following astronaut selection through the settlers’ first years on Mars. So far, the company says, more than 1,000 interested applicants have gotten in touch.
For people considering venturing into space, Mars One includes this obvious disclaimer:
No human space mission is without risks to human life. Mars and space are unforgiving environments where a small accident can result in large failures, injuries and death of the astronauts.
The move, by the way, is permanent. There are no plans to return the pioneers to Earth.