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Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts

Posted by: spacechick - Thu Jan 10, 2013 12:16 am
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Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts 
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Post Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Thu Jan 10, 2013 12:16 am
So the non profit Mars one is planning to settle Mars in 2023 permanently. They just released their qualifications for their astronauts. Would you go to Mars on a one way trip, grow your own food, and slowly die of radiation?

http://mars-one.com/en/faq-en/21-faq-se ... y-to-apply

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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Mon Jan 14, 2013 4:29 pm
spacechick wrote:
So the non profit Mars one is planning to settle Mars in 2023 permanently. They just released their qualifications for their astronauts. Would you go to Mars on a one way trip, grow your own food, and slowly die of radiation?

http://mars-one.com/en/faq-en/21-faq-se ... y-to-apply

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Never ceases to amaze me that people come out with comments like the above as if the people behind the scheme hadn't thought of it. Come on people, the people behinds these plans are not stupid, and radiation is one of the most obvious of the problems to overcome. The chances of them overlooking something so utterly basic are zero.


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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:34 pm
JamesHughes wrote:
The chances of them overlooking something so utterly basic are zero.

Yes, but still many consider them lunatics. With no serious financial backing, no launch vehicle no hardware designed and no metal bent they are... not sure what the right word is to describe it... overly optimistic regarding the 2023 landing date.

There are other major issues. They likely won't get any funding from a major corporation, due to permanent nature of such a financial liability. For example if some corporation decided to fund everything for the first 10 years (unlikely, but let's assume that it happened). They landed, had huge interest around the globe and then what? After a year average people will loose interest. Now the sponsor is required to pay non-trivial amount to keep this endeavor going. The moment they cut financing, there will be outcry around the world "greedy corporation killed brave aeronauts".

Without funding, they won't go anywhere. They will probably have some kind of Mars base simulator and will do some psychological experiments, but that's about it.

Of course, I wish them all the best and I hope to be proven wrong with their actions and actual hardware flying.

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Last edited by thomson on Tue Jan 15, 2013 3:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:42 pm
JamesHughes wrote:
spacechick wrote:
So the non profit Mars one is planning to settle Mars in 2023 permanently. They just released their qualifications for their astronauts. Would you go to Mars on a one way trip, grow your own food, and slowly die of radiation?

http://mars-one.com/en/faq-en/21-faq-se ... y-to-apply

Image



Never ceases to amaze me that people come out with comments like the above as if the people behind the scheme hadn't thought of it. Come on people, the people behinds these plans are not stupid, and radiation is one of the most obvious of the problems to overcome. The chances of them overlooking something so utterly basic are zero.


I agree - it's just as likely as them mixing up the metric and the imperial/inches/feet systems. Completely out of the question.

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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Tue Jan 15, 2013 8:24 pm
I agree with thomson on the financial issues, and would like to add that those candidate requirements don't seem like they would make for interesting reality TV. I haven't seen any reality TV since the original Big Brother and I have no idea why people watch that stuff, but I predict that watching a group of smart, affable people peacefully study technical manuals is not going to draw an audience large enough to finance the mission. So I imagine that the idea is that regardless of guidelines the topic is going to attract a whole bunch of crazies, and that the viewers are going to spend the first couple of years watching people talk about aliens and auras and the Face On Mars. That would probably attract some kind of audience, but you have to wonder if it doesn't scare off sponsors as well as serious candidates.

Apart from the financial issues, there is the technical side. Yes, we've made all sorts of fancy Mars plans in the past, but the fact of the matter is that no human has ever been away from Earth (i.e. beyond Earth orbit and easy resupply) for more than a few days. They're proposing to multiply that by a factor of hopefully at least a hundred (3 years if you take a 12-day Apollo moon mission as a reference) and up to a thousand or more (30+ years). That's a big step, and a pile of paper studies does not a working space ship or colony make.

Without any guarantees of continued support, they need a stable closed-loop ecosystem. Even very simple closed biological systems exhibit chaotic behaviour, and we have to my knowledge not demonstrated any such thing so far here on Earth, let alone in a zero- or low-gravity environment with native soils and so on. As for the radiation issue, on their advisor page is Günther Reitz, PhD, who seems to know a thing or two on the effects of space radiation on the human body. So they certainly haven't missed it. But again, having ideas is one thing, having a practical working solution something else again.

And that seems to be the key point here. On the "Is this really possible?" page they state that they're only using existing technologies that can be built right now. However, they also state that they're planning to use a modified Dragon capsule, and the human-carrying Dragon is currently still being developed and quite different from the existing version. It's not something that SpaceX can just build to order, even if crewed capsules have been done in the past. I also don't think that there's currently anyone who stocks radiation shielding equipment suitable for a crewed Mars transfer flight, or has a finalised, validated design for such, and last time I was at the garden shop, large-scale flight-ready hydroponic gardens were suspiciously absent.

So their "no new technologies"-edict seems to be referring to technologies at a rather fundamental level, rather than to concrete products, and that makes sense, because Commercial Off The Shelf simply doesn't exist for things that have never been done before. It also matches with the fact that all those Advisors are scientists, not engineers. There's a big gap between having the science pretty much figured out and having a working product.

On a final note, I do applaud them for trying, and considering the fact that pretty much the only space-related deadline anyone ever made was JFK's moon challenge, it's not necessarily a problem that 2023 appears rather unrealistic. There are many crazier plans around. Still, I'll claim bad eyes and lack of body fat (Mars is cold!) and decline this particular invitation...

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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Wed Jan 16, 2013 10:27 am
thomson wrote:
JamesHughes wrote:
The chances of them overlooking something so utterly basic are zero.

Yes, but still many consider them lunatics. With no serious financial backing, no launch vehicle no hardware designed and no metal bent they are... not sure what the right word is to describe it... overly optimistic regarding the 2023 landing date.

There are other major issues. They likely won't get any funding from a major corporation, due to permanent nature of such a financial liability. For example if some corporation decided to fund everything for the first 10 years (unlikely, but let's assume that it happened). They landed, had huge interest around the globe and then what? After a year average people will loose interest. Now the sponsor is required to pay non-trivial amount to keep this endeavor going. The moment they cut financing, there will be outcry around the world "greedy corporation killed brave aeronauts".

Without funding, they won't go anywhere. They will probably have some kind of Mars base simulator and will do some psychological experiments, but that's about it.

Of course, I wish them all the best and I hope to be proven wrong with their actions and actual hardware flying.


I wasn't talking about finance, or the feasibility of the whole project, just the lame comment about radiation. I cannot see this project happening by 2023, even with Musk going at full tilt at SpaceX.


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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Wed Jan 16, 2013 6:38 pm
I don't know. If they haven't critically thought about finances and designs then radiation and survival might be just a late after thought.


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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:15 am
lightningbob wrote:
I don't know. If they haven't critically thought about finances and designs then radiation and survival might be just a late after thought.


There have been much research done in to the radiation side of things - so they don't actually need to do that much thinking - a lot of it has already been done.

Finance - not so much!


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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Thu Jan 17, 2013 2:59 pm
I read the qualifications. They sound good but seem like they might be hard to identify.


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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:41 pm
They have to be broad. Most of the fun of those Idol shows come from the people who can't sing, not from the ones who can. Make the initial requirements specific and stringent, and you'll only get qualified candidates, who are boring. Hence this vague description and the lack of requirement for engineering degrees and things like that. Obviously you'll need a couple to get through to the final stages, but it's not in there.

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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Sun Jan 20, 2013 5:25 pm
As an addendum, here's an article about growing plants in space. Note that it is from 2003, no idea how much progress has been made since then, but it shows that it's anything but trivial.

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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:28 pm
Lourens wrote:
As an addendum, here's an article about growing plants in space. Note that it is from 2003, no idea how much progress has been made since then, but it shows that it's anything but trivial.


I think the future of feeding ourselves independent of the ecosystems of this planet is bioreactors utilising algae, bacteria, and fungi, not greenhouses filled with vascular plants.

I could be wrong, but large organisms waste a lot of energy on functions that isn't relevant when all you are looking for is starch, fats, amino acids, vitamins, minerals.

I mean the lignin and cellulose grasses synthesise to support their stalks and leaves are completely indegistable for us unless predigested by some microbes inside the digestive tracts of another mammal, and then incorporated into the body of said mammal. The next step is to have bioreactors digest the cellulose for us to make starch/sugars/lipids/proteins, but this also would mean wasting energy compared to a system, where the primary producer cells make only starch or sugars or fats or amino acids and none of the other supportive structures we would have to break down to make useful. /unless we use these structures for other stuff than food of course/

The only reason it makes sense to eat animals is because they give us access to otherwise undigestable plant materials. But they are highly inefficient, and the sooner we cut them out of our food production the better. :P

I do enjoy meat, it is cool that through a medium I can "eat" grass but, we could have more efficient mediums wasting less of the grass along the way which would enable us to have more nice natural vegetation without the high grazing pressure of intensive agriculture.

But the same can be said about vascular plants. It is cool that through them I can eat "light" and "air" and "rock", but they are also not the most efficient way of making useful materials for my biological functions, especially if we are talking about living in confined spaces with very limited resources.

I should be sleeping, I have no idea why I am ranting here lol...

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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Mon Apr 01, 2013 2:00 pm
This story is much the same as quite a few ideas for non-state owned space endeavors. I like them all as it shows that groups of people and companies are trying to engage the general public and get there support for what could be the ride of this century. Yeah it is true most of them are cash strapped at the moment but you can be assured that they will make the best use of the funds they have due to the nature of business. Would I contemplate going to Mars for what may be a one way trip? Yes as setting foot on Mars is a massive accomplishment for mankind never mind from a personal point of view. I'm sure everyone that knew me would be vastly proud.


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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Mon Apr 01, 2013 5:45 pm
I don't think it would be too hard to start the beginning of terraforming Mars. There are many bacteria who can survive in that environment, and then you just go up the food chain. You don't have to go too far up either - there are even extremeophile insects and such things. And I've heard that ants are full of protien (yum!).

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Post Re: Mars One Released Their Qualifications For Their Astronauts   Posted on: Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:33 pm
SuperShuki wrote:
I don't think it would be too hard to start the beginning of terraforming Mars. There are many bacteria who can survive in that environment, and then you just go up the food chain. You don't have to go too far up either - there are even extremeophile insects and such things. And I've heard that ants are full of protien (yum!).


I think you need to watch some more 1950's scfi after finding Mars clear of high level life that might harm us (tho we still need to listen to Herbert's warning about the harm that bacteria and viruses can cause when not in their native environment). You want to seed the planet with an insect that already out numbers us numerically and iirc in biomass down here. In a high radiation environment likely to cause rapid mutation on a planet littered with both functioning and broken high tech robots. What could possible go wrong. :?: Did you get your mad scientist badge from a box of corn flakes :?: :wink: :twisted:

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