People are going to Mars - level 3

People are going to Mars - level 3

29-04-2013 14:00

The search has begun for volunteers for a mission to fly to Mars. The only slight catch is that if you go, you can't come back. It's part of a plan by a not-for-profit Dutch company called Mars One who wants to establish a permanent human colony on the Red Planet.

"Today, the Mars One Foundation starts to search for Mars inhabitants. A search for people from all nations who want to settle on Mars. Mars One is a not-for-profit organization that is working on landing the first crew on Mars in 2023 and another crew every two years after that."

Take off, landing and various parts of the mission will be streamed on the internet with Mars One claiming an estimated potential audience of four billion. Successful applicants will have to undergo seven years’ training before the flight which will take seven months. The one-way nature of the mission has raised questions from some over whether or not it's ethical.

"Any big step that you take will always mean that there's risk. Space missions always include risk and this mission will not be different. When you send humans to Mars, there will be risks. But we will select the people and we will tell those people the risks. They will understand the risks and they will have to weigh the risks. 'Do I want to take these risks to make my dream come true or do I not?' And it's up to the people who are going to determine if it's worth it for them."

The first crew is due to lift off in 2023 with another one joining them every two years after that. Each one will be made up of two men and two women. Whether or not they choose to increase that number once they arrive on their new planet, will be left up to them.

"It will be a dangerous environment and any prospective parents should always ask themselves, 'Is this the right time and place where to have children?' These are responsible people that we're sending to Mars. So they will certainly come to the conclusion that it's, especially in the first years, not the right place to have children. But maybe when there's twenty or thirty people on Mars, that could become a possibility."

Anyone between the age of 18 and 40 can apply with a 38-dollar-application fee going towards the six billion dollar cost of the mission.

Interesting words: inhabitants (people who live in some place), streamed (showed), estimated (guessed), undergo (go through), determine (decide), conclusion (final decision).

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