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Simulated Mission to Mars to Begin in Moscow Next Month

19. May 2010 by Christy 0 Comments

On June 3, six volunteers will enter a spaceship module in Moscow and remain inside for 500 days. The voluntary captivity is meant to simulate a mission to Mars and the men, three Russians, two Europeans, and one Chinese national, are nervous, but excited, about the upcoming experiment.


"It will be trying for all of us,” said Chinese participant Wang Yue, 27. “We cannot see our family, we cannot see our friends, but I think it is all a glorious time in our lives.”


The experiment is designed to measure the psychological and physical toll a mission to Mars might have on humans, and scientists have strived to make the experience as realistic as possible. The volunteers will only be able to shower once every ten days and contact with a team on Earth will be delayed and disrupted. Volunteers must cope with unexpected crises on their own and deal with the challenges of constant, close contact with fellow participants. Designers also spared no detail when creating the 1,000-square-foot mock spaceship.


"It will be tough. A year and half is not a small thing,” said French volunteer Romain Charles, 31. “It is a very long time, but we are building a team for each other to help the one who is down.”


The simulated mission follows a similar experiment that took place at the Russian Institute for Biomedical Problems (IBMP) last year. That experiment sealed six volunteers in a module for 105 days.

 

Source: AFP
Photo credit: Alexei Filippov/ITAR-TASS/Newscom