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Forum:Commercial Space - Military Space
Topic:Mars One Foundation human settlement on Mars
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"We are very excited about launching the selection program. Round One is where we open the doors to Mars for everyone on Earth. This is an international mission and it is very important for the project that anyone anywhere can ask themselves: Do I want this? Am I ready for this? If the answer is yes then we want to hear from you," said Bas Lansdorp, co-founder of Mars One.

In the last year Mars One received 10,000 messages from prospective applicants from over 100 countries. Mars One expects an unprecedented number of applications and even more internet users visiting the application website to support their favorite candidates.

Applicants are given the choice of publicly sharing and promoting their application page. While Mars One experts will choose which candidates progress to Round 2, everyone will have the opportunity to know the aspiring settlers and give them their vote of confidence.

Applicants will pay a small administration fee that varies across nations according to their per capita GDP. The variable fee makes the program equally accessible for applicants from all nations and also reduces the number of insincere entries.

Mars One is looking for applicants who are both mature and interesting. Beyond Round Four,in the seven-year period preceding their flight to Mars,all the potential settlers will be given the skills they will need on Mars and on their journey there. No particular academic or professional background is considered a prerequisite for selection.

"Gone are the days when bravery and the number of hours flying a supersonic jet were the top criteria," said Norbert Kraft, Mars One's Chief Medical Director and former NASA senior researcher.

"For this mission of permanent settlement we are more concerned with how well each astronaut lives and works with others and their ability to deal with a lifetime of challenges."

Throughout the astronaut selection program, Mars One will select applicants who have good physical and mental health and show five key character traits: Resilience, Adaptability, Curiosity, Ability to trust others, and Creativity/Resourcefulness.

In the last stage when 24-40 candidates have been fully trained and qualified, the final decision of choosing the first settlers will be decided by an audience vote.

"In a 1000 years, everyone on Earth will still remember who the first humans on Mars were, just like Neil Armstrong has etched in our memories forever. This makes the selection of the first crew to a different planet a very important election; in my opinion more important than most elections. We hope the whole world will join Mars One in our democratic search of the envoys of mankind to Mars," Lansdorp said.

About Mars One

The Mars One Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation that will send humans to Mars in 2023 to establish the first permanent settlement outside Earth. Before the first settlers land on Mars a self-sustaining habitat will be set up with help of rovers and more settlers will follow every two years. A realistic mission plan has been designed using only existing technology available through the private space industry. The first footprint on Mars will fascinate and inspire generations; it is this public interest that will help finance this human mission to Mars.

See here for discussion of Mars One's plans for 2023 Mars colony.
Robert PearlmanMars One release
Lockheed Martin and SSTL selected for Mars One's first Unmanned Mission to Mars

Mars One has secured lead suppliers for its first mission to Mars. The mission, slated for a 2018 launch, will include a robotic lander and a communications satellite. Mars One has contracted Lockheed Martin and Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd. (SSTL) to develop mission concept studies. The Mars lander will be built by Lockheed Martin and the communications satellite will be built by SSTL.

This 2018 mission will be a demonstration mission and will provide proof of concept for some of the technologies that are important for a permanent human settlement on Mars; the ultimate goal of the non-profit Mars One foundation.

Bas Lansdorp, M.Sc., Mars One Co-founder and CEO stated, "We're very excited to have contracted Lockheed Martin and SSTL for our first mission to Mars. Both are significant players in their field of expertise and have outstanding track records. These will be the first private spacecraft to Mars and their successful arrival and operation will be a historic accomplishment."

The Lockheed Martin lander will be based on the successful 2007 NASA Phoenix mission spacecraft and will demonstrate some of the technologies required for the manned mission. Lockheed Martin has a distinct legacy of participating in nearly every NASA mission to Mars. For the Phoenix mission, the company designed, built, tested and operated the lander for NASA.

"This will be the first private mission to Mars and Lockheed Martin is very excited to have been contracted by Mars One. This is an ambitious project and we're already working on the mission concept study, starting with the proven design of Phoenix," said Ed Sedivy, Civil Space chief engineer at Lockheed Martin Space Systems. "Having managed the Phoenix spacecraft development, I can tell you, landing on Mars is challenging and a thrill and this is going to be a very exciting mission."

The lander will have the ability to scoop up Martian soil with a robotic arm similar to the Phoenix mission. A water experiment will extract water from the Martian soil. A power experiment will demonstrate the deployment and operation of thin-film solar panels on the surface, and a camera on the lander will be used to make continuous video recordings.

The demonstration satellite will provide a high bandwidth communications system in a Mars synchronous orbit and will be used to relay data and a live video feed from the lander on the surface of Mars back to Earth. Sir Martin Sweeting, Executive Chairman of SSTL said: "SSTL believes that the commercialisation of space exploration is vital in order to bring down costs and schedules and fuel progress. This study gives us an unprecedented opportunity to take our tried and tested approach and apply it to Mars One's imaginative and exhilarating challenge of sending humans to Mars through private investment."

The lander will also carry the winner of a worldwide university challenge that Mars One will launch in 2014 and items from several Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education challenge winners.

Arno Wielders, Co-founder and CTO of Mars One, said, "With our 2018 missions, Mars One brings the settlement of Mars one step closer to reality. The demonstration of water production on Mars is crucial for manned missions. The live video feed from the surface camera will bring Mars closer to people on Earth. And with the STEM education challenges and university competitions planned on our lander, we will enthuse a whole new generation for Mars exploration, even before our first crew lands."

Mars One decided to launch the lander and communications satellite in 2018, two years later than Mars One's original schedule. This new schedule provides time for the development for the two spacecraft and for student participation in STEM and university challenges.

Mars One's mission will not be financed by government-funded organizations. Instead, means of funding the mission include sponsorships and exclusive partnerships. Mars One is in discussion with several partners interested to participate in specific components of the mission or to partner in the STEM and university challenges. Mars One is also launching an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign that enables people to participate in this mission to Mars. Among other things, contributors will be granted voting rights for several mission decisions up for vote in the future, including the winners of the STEM and University Challenges.

"Landing the first humans on Mars should be everyone's mission and not just the mission of one country or organization" said Lansdorp. "Our 2018 mission will change the way people view space exploration as they will have the opportunity to participate. They will not only be spectators, but also participants. We think it is important to involve people from all over the world in what we're doing, and crowdfunding and crowdsourcing activities are important means to do that."

Robert PearlmanLockheed Martin release
Mars One Selects Lockheed Martin to Study First Private Unmanned Mission to Mars

Mars One has selected Lockheed Martin to develop a mission concept study for its Mars lander spacecraft. The lander will be based on the successful 2007 NASA Phoenix spacecraft and will be a technology demonstrator.

Slated for a 2018 launch, the mission will provide proof of concept for some of the technologies that are important for a permanent human settlement on Mars; the ultimate goal of the non-profit Mars One foundation.

"When we decided to move forward with the development of this private mission to Mars, we looked across the industry and determined Lockheed Martin was the obvious choice to build the lander," said Bas Lansdorp, M.Sc., Mars One Co-founder and CEO. "They have a distinct legacy of participating in nearly every NASA mission to Mars. This will be the first private mission to Mars and the lander's successful arrival and operation will be a historic accomplishment."

For the Phoenix mission, the company designed, built, tested and operated the lander for NASA. The Mars One lander study will evaluate the applicability of this design for the Mars One mission and identify any modifications that are necessary to meet their requirements. In addition, program cost and schedule estimates will be formulated to guide the execution of the Mars One unmanned mission to Mars.

"We are excited to have been selected by Mars One for this ambitious project and we're already working on the mission concept study, starting with the proven design of Phoenix," said Ed Sedivy, Civil Space chief engineer at Lockheed Martin Space Systems. "Having managed the Phoenix spacecraft development, I can tell you, landing on Mars is challenging and a thrill and this is going to be a very exciting mission."

In addition to technology demonstration experiments, Mars One plans for the lander to also carry an experiment from a worldwide university challenge and items from several Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) challenge winners.

Mars One also selected Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd. (SSTL) to develop a mission concept study for a Mars communications orbiter that will be used in conjunction with the robotic lander. The satellite will be a high-bandwidth communications system in Mars orbit and will be used to relay the data from the surface of Mars to Earth. The orbiter will be in a Mars synchronous orbit to ensure the 2018 lander and future settlement can always communicate with it.
Robert PearlmanSurrey Satellite Technology Ltd. (SSTL) release
SSTL selected for first private Mars mission

Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd (SSTL) has been selected to carry out a concept study to develop an interplanetary communications system for Mars One, the privately funded project to establish a human settlement on Mars.

Sir Martin Sweeting, Executive Chairman of SSTL said: "SSTL believes that the commercialisation of space exploration is vital in order to bring down costs and schedules and fuel progress. This study gives us an unprecedented opportunity to take our tried and tested approach and apply it Mars One's imaginative and exhilarating challenge of sending humans to Mars through private investment."

During the course of the study, SSTL will analyse the mission requirements and concept design for communications satellites in a Mars synchronous orbit that would provide the back-bone of communications between the Mars settlers and Earth. The study will consider the technical specifications required for the communications satellites, the orbit, and the launch, transfer and injection scenarios that would put them into operation.

The study will also provide the technical specifications for a communications satellite that will be launched in 2018 together with a Mars lander from Lockheed Martin, as a demonstration mission for Mars One. The demonstration satellite will provide a high bandwidth communications system in a Mars synchronous orbit and will be used to relay data and a live video feed from the lander on the surface of Mars back to Earth.

Bas Lansdorp, M.Sc., Mars One Co-founder and CEO states: "We're very excited to have contracted Lockheed Martin and SSTL for our first mission to Mars. Both are significant players in their field of expertise and have outstanding track records. These will be the first private spacecraft to Mars and their successful arrival and operation will be a historic accomplishment."

Robert PearlmanMars One release
Mars One Slashes Applicant Pool by 99.5%

Across the globe, 1058 hopefuls have been selected as candidates to begin human life on Mars in 2025.

On December 30, 2013, Mars One announces the selection of the candidates from the applicant pool of over 200,000 hoping to establish human life on Martian soil. Mars One co-founder Bas Lansdorp describes the remaining 1058 candidates as our first tangible glimpse into what the new human settlement will truly look like. Lansdorp says "We're extremely appreciative and impressed with the sheer number of people who submitted their applications. However, the challenge with 200,000 applicants is separating those who we feel are physically and mentally adept to become human ambassadors on Mars from those who are obviously taking the mission much less seriously. We even had a couple of applicants submit their videos in the nude!"

The selection criteria are outlined in detail on the Mars One website. All applicants were notified today via e-mail of their application status. For the applicants who were not selected in this round, there is still a chance they could reapply at a later date, which has not yet been determined. According to Lansdorp, the chance for reapplication provides hope. "US astronaut Clayton Anderson was rejected by NASA for its astronaut training program 15 times, yet in 2007 he boarded the Space Shuttle Atlantis for a trip to the International Space Station. He proved anything can happen and the door is never completely closed."

So what's next for the 1058 pre-selected Mars hopefuls? Norbert Kraft, M.D., Chief Medical Officer of Mars One and recipient of the 2013 NASA Group Achievement Award says, "The next several selection phases in 2014 and 2015 will include rigorous simulations, many in team settings, with focus on testing the physical and emotional capabilities of our remaining candidates. We expect to begin understanding what is motivating our candidates to take this giant leap for humankind. This is where it really gets exciting for Mars One, our applicants, and the communities they're a part of."

Details of the 2014 selection phases have not been agreed upon due to ongoing negotiations with media companies for the rights to televise the selection processes. Expect further information to be released in early 2014. Lansdorp says, "We fully anticipate many of our remaining candidates to become celebrities in their towns, cities, and in many cases, countries. It's about to get very interesting."

This announcement comes on the heels of a wild finish to 2013 for Mars One. On December 10th, Mars One launched their first ever crowd-funding campaign, focused on bringing funds and attention to the first mission, an unmanned trip to Mars scheduled for 2018. On the same day as the crowd-funding campaign launch, Mars One announced in Washington DC, agreements with aerospace titan Lockheed Martin and the world's leading small satellite company Surrey Satellite Technology to develop mission plans for the 2018 mission. 2014 figures to be even busier for the team at Mars One than 2013, with multiple applicant selection phases, worldwide education events, and more.

Robert PearlmanMars One release
Mars One Teams with Endemol for Worldwide TV Event

Mars One and multi-award winning factual producer DSP (an Endemol company) today announced they have entered an international partnership to screen the mission to send the world's first one way astronauts to Mars.

DSP becomes the exclusive worldwide production partner for the Mars One astronaut selection and training program, which will see people from all walks of life undergo one of the most extraordinary and challenging assessment processes ever seen.

705 highly motivated candidates, shortlisted from over 200,000 who applied to become future inhabitants of Mars, will be tested to the extreme as part of an elite training program run by a panel comprised of pre-eminent scientists, adventurers and astronauts.

In order to qualify for the mission, each individual must demonstrate that they have acquired the intricate knowledge and skills as well as the high levels of psychological and physical performance needed for the most long distance voyage humankind has ever embarked upon.

DSP will document the aspiring pioneers' astonishing journeys every step of the way in the lead up to the mission, which will see the winners become the first to make the 300 million-mile, one way trip to establish permanent human life on the red planet.

Human settlement on Mars is possible today with existing technologies and Mars One's mission plan integrates components that are well tested and readily available from industry leaders worldwide. However, no return trip can be made. Instead Mars One will send additional crews every two years to further build the pioneering colony.

With the astronaut selection process already underway, the first instalments of DSP's landmark production are expected to begin broadcasting around the world in early 2015. Further details and announcements are due to follow soon.

Bas Lansdorp, Co-founder & CEO of Mars One said, "Bringing the story of our incredibly brave aspiring Martians to the world now officially begins with what we feel is a perfect partnership. Our team felt all along that we needed a partner whose strength lies in factual storytelling to an international audience. DSP will provide that to Mars One, while allowing our selection committee to maintain control of the applicant selection process. This really is a perfect fit for both of us!"

Iain Riddick, DSP's Head of Special Projects and Digital Media, comments: "It is a great privilege for DSP to be chosen to exclusively follow the incredible journeys of those who will make humankind's first footprint on Mars. This has to be the world's toughest job interview for what is without question a world-first opportunity and the human stories that emerge will captivate and inspire generations across the globe."

About DSP

DSP has a long established reputation for producing world class television programmes and theatrical documentaries for UK, US and international broadcasters. The company has achieved global industry recognition for its ground breaking output and has received more than 40 industry awards, including accolades from BAFTA, The Peabody Awards, The Royal Television Society and the US Academy of Television, Arts and Sciences.

Credits include: The Mill (Channel 4), Richard III: The King in the Car Park (Channel 4); How to Build a Bionic Man (Channel 4 and Smithsonian Channel); Earth From Space (NOVA and Discovery Canada), 'Hawking' (PBS and Channel 4); Dead or Alive (National Geographic Channels International Wild); Nazi Megastructures (National Geographic Channel) and Neil Armstrong: First Man on the Moon (BBC Two).

DSP is part of Endemol, a world leading content creator with a global network of operations in over 30 countries including the USA, the UK, Spain, Italy, France, Germany and the Netherlands, as well as Latin America, India, Israel, South Africa and Australia.

Robert PearlmanMars One release
Mars mission opens its doors to scientific community for 2018 lander

Mars One is extending a formal invitation to universities, research bodies, and companies to contribute to the payload of the 2018 unmanned Mars Lander. The best ideas will be chosen by a panel of experts. This mission will act as a staging point for the first-ever human mission to the red planet in 2025.

Mars One is soliciting proposals for four demonstration payloads that will demonstrate technologies for the human mission in 2025, proposals for one payload that will be elected in a world wide university competition, and proposals for two payloads that are for sale to the highest bidder. These last two payloads can be used for scientific experiments, marketing activities or anything inbetween.

"We are opening our doors to the scientific community in order to source the best ideas from around the world," said Arno Wielders, co-founder and chief technical officer of Mars One. "The ideas that are adopted will not only be used on the lander in 2018, but will quite possibly provide the foundation for the first human colony on Mars. For anyone motivated by human exploration, there can be no greater honor than contributing to a manned mission to Mars."

The payloads will be part of the Mars One lander that will be launched in August 2018. The lander will be built on the same platform that was used for the 2007 NASA Phoenix mission. Mars One contracted Lockheed Martin, who also built the Phoenix spacecraft, to develop the mission concept study for the 2018 lander.

The four demonstration payloads, university competition payload and two payloads for sale are as follows.

Demonstration payloads: Mars One will send four experiments to demonstrate some of the technologies that are important for the successful permanent human settlement of Mars:

  • A soil acquisition experiment that will collect soil for water production;
  • A water extraction experiment that will extract water from the Martian soil;
  • A thin film solar panel will demonstrate the possibility of generating the settlement's energy by only using sunlight for power;
  • A camera system which, in combination with a Mars-synchronous communications satellite, will enable Mars One to send a live video feed from Mars to Earth. Everyone on Earth will be able to take a 'real time' look on Mars.
University competition payload: One payload selected from the entries of universities worldwide will be sent to the surface of Mars on board of the 2018 Lander. Mars One invites teams from any university around the world to submit a payload proposal. Proposals can include scientific experiments, technology demonstrations or any other exciting idea. The Mars One community members will have an important vote in the selection of the competing university submissions and will elect the winning payload. University teams can submit their notice of intent to participate in this competition on the following page: community.mars-one.com/university-competition.

Bas Lansdorp, Co-founder & CEO of Mars One said, "The brightest young minds of our planet are being invited to participate in Mars One's first Mars lander. This is an opportunity for university teams to launch an experiment not just to space, but to the surface of Mars. We do this to inspire students to believe that anything is possible. We're not only looking for scientific proposals but also for outreach or educational ones. Mars One's community will determine which payload flies to Mars in an online vote."

Payloads for sale: Mars One offers two payload opportunities for paying mission contributors. Proposals can take the form of scientific experiments, technology demonstrations, marketing and publicity campaigns, or any other suggested payload. "Previously, the only payloads that have landed on Mars are those which NASA has selected," said Bas Lansdorp, "We want to open up the opportunity to the entire world to participate in our mission to Mars by sending a certain payload to the surface of Mars."

The launch of the lander will happen in less than four years time. This sets an ambitious schedule for the selection, development and delivery of the payloads. The schedule for the selection phase of the payloads and further information concerning the proposals can be found in the Request For Proposals (RFP) document, and the Proposal Information Package (PIP).

The evaluation process of all payloads will be performed by Mars One in close collaboration with its prime contractor, Lockheed Martin, and specific advisers of Mars One. Mars One will enlist the help of other experts as necessary to ensure viable payloads are selected.

See here for discussion of Mars One's plans for 2023 Mars colony.

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