Last year, three Indians were short-listed among the 100 applicants for the one-way trip to Mars in 2024. This time, for the first time, an all Indian crew is set to travel to Mars. Well, not really Mars. But, somewhat. At least it will feel like Mars.
According to a report in Times Of India, an all-India crew will soon embark on a simulated Martian environment. The participants may not really travel all the way to Mars, but will experience the challenges of a manned mission to the red planet.
The two-week research assignment will be held at the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) in Utah, US. It will begin on January 28, 2017.
The report notes that nearly 1,000 youngsters from around the world have participated in this programme since it was launched in 2001.
MDRS crews traditionally consist of six people, who volunteer for one of the two week shifts or crew rotations available during the northern hemisphere's winter months. This was built in order to develop knowledge needed to prepare for exploring Mars.
The project's goals are to develop field tactics based on environmental constraints, to test habitat design features and tools, and to assess crew selection protocols.
Although much warmer than Mars, the desert location was selected because of its Mars-like terrain and appearance.
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