If you have 8 years to spare and would like to be one of the four lucky guinea pigs Dutch non-profit Mars One sends to the Red Planet, it's time to hop in line.
Mars One announced last year that it hopes to put a team of humans on Mars in 2023 and that it will select from a global pool later this year.
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The requirements for potential astronauts are definitely less stringent than NASA's -- Mars One is looking for candidates who are at least 18 years old, are intelligent and are good shape, and aren't hell-bent on getting back to Earth post take off (there are no plans to return the astronauts to their home planet).
"Gone are the days when bravery and the number of hours flying a supersonic jet were the top criteria," Norbert Kraft, Mars One's chief medical director and a former NASA researcher, said in a statement. "Now, we are more concerned with how well each astronaut works and lives with the others, in the long journey from Earth to Mars and for a lifetime of challenges ahead."
Training for the crew will last 8 years (perhaps a common language will be established) while Mars One sends a robotic team with cargo to the Red Planet to set up a human outpost.
Mars One is planning on the arrival of the team of four on Mars in 2023, with the arrival of more participants every two years. The non-profit plans on funding the most expensive part of the entire operation with the launch of a global reality television series (naturally) that will follow the candidates through their training and colonization efforts. For more info, check out Mars One's website.
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