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A team led by millionaire and former space tourist Dennis Tito plans to send a "tested couple" to Mars and back in a privately funded mission. The Inspiration Mars Foundation plans to start its one-and-a-half-year mission in January 2018. The foundation has carried out a study which it says shows that it is feasible to achieve such a mission using existing technology. The group still has to raise funding for their mission.
The mission will be a straightforward flight to the Red Planet and return without landing. This greatly reduces the cost of the mission. The Mars Inspiration team believe that it is technically possible to launch such a mission in five years' time.
Originally posted by JimOberg
This is a GREAT idea and i'm going to be helping to promote it. Pay serious attention, guys. It's almost crazy enough to be attempted.
The plan was to choose a middle-aged couple because their health and fertility would be less affected by the radiation they would be exposed to during such a long space mission.
"When you're out that far, and the Earth is a tiny, blue pinpoint, you're going to need someone you can hug," Tito told Space.com.
Originally posted by GaryN
I doubt it will ever fly, though I really hope it does, as it should answer the question of if stars can be seen from interplanetary space.
Originally posted by LiveEquation
I recall reading somewhere about the possibility of spacemen developing dementia due to exposure to radiation. Why a married couple? What makes then think this couple will not conjugate and possibly have a child during the trip, endangering everyone else.
I wouldn't mind going because chances are that I would deviate from the plan and actually land on Mars to determine for myself if anyone ever lived there.