NASA Launches Year-Long Mars Experiment In America

Mars rover/Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

NASA has tasked four volunteers of living in a Mars simulation room for a year which will be equipped with a gym and sofas, although there will be no windows.

Forget about Mars Rovers and the pictures and data that they have managed to collect during actual missions on the red planet, NASA is conducting their own research and experiments a lot closer to home.

Mars has always been one of the most explored and intriguing planets with many believing that it’s the closest one to Earth and could potentially home humans if the worst was to happen to Earth, but that is merely an assumption at the moment.

While both Mars and Earth are relatively similar in a lot of ways, living on Mars wouldn’t be simple and would also require a lot of work on the planet before anyone could even think of living there with the likes of Dust devils, high temperatures and dangerously high amounts of radiation all a cause for concern.

NASA to conduct Mars mission

Due to these risks, nobody has ever been able to reach Mars, unlike when people have managed to land and walk on the moon, therefore, NASA have taken matters into their own hands and set up a Mars-like set-up in Texas for four volunteers.

The CHAPEA (Crew Health and Performance Exploration Analog) was officially launched on Monday, June 26th which is seen as a big step towards eventually launching a rocket with humans on it to walk on Mars.

The four-person crew who are all volunteers will spend the following 378 days in a 1,700 square-foot room that is being dubbed as ‘Mars Dune Alpha’ and it will be equipped with four rooms – one for each person – but also more luxurious things such as a gym and leather sofas.

A potentially big step forward in moving to Mars

A big downfall and huge red flag is that there will be no windows for the volunteers, mainly to ensure they have no contact with the outside world and have to fully encapsulate themselves in the Mars experience.

What they will be doing is pretty exciting though as they will be set numerous tasks during their year-long mission including robotics operations, growing crops, and maintaining their hygiene amid ‘extraterrestrial’ obstacles.

As the mission evolves, NASA are going to be measuring both the physical and mental well-being of the four volunteers to see what impact living in a Mars environment would really do to people.

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Written by

Aaron Hindhaugh

Qualified and experienced journalist covering all aspects of news and sport. Specialist in both Men's and Women's football with increasing coverage of golf and tennis.