Thursday, January 02, 2014

62 Indians shortlisted for one-way trip to Mars

File photo of Mars (Pic: Anadolu Agency)
NEW DELHI (AA) - 1,058 aspirants, including 62 from India, have been shortlisted in an “astronaut selection result” by Mars One, the Netherlands-based non-profit organization, for a private one-way mission to Mars in 2024 to “establish permanent human life” on the red planet.
Out of 20,000 Indian applicants, 62 were selected for the ambitious Mars project which has got an overwhelming response from across the globe.
Press Trust of India quoted that those who made in the first cut, 297 are from the United States, 75 from Canada, 62 from India followed by Russia with 52.
Mars One announced the selection of 1,058 candidates on December 30, 2013 on its website from the application pool of over 2,000,000 from 140 countries.
Bas Lansdorp, Mars One co-founder, described the shortlisted candidates as “first tangible glimpse into what the new human settlement will truly look like.”
Lansdorp said he was extremely appreciative of the overwhelming response the project Mars One got.
“We’re extremely appreciative and impressed with the sheer number of people who submitted their applications,” he said.
Lansdorp said the selection process was a “challenge”. 
“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,” he said.
Over 2,000,000 applicants were informed via email of their application status. For those who were not selected in this round, there is still a chance to reapply at a later date probably in early 2014, Mars One said in a statement. 
Norbert Kraft, Chief Medical Officer of Mars One and recipient of 2013 NASA Group Achievement Award, said that next several selection phases will include rigorous simulations.
“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,” Kraft said.
“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,” he said.
Starting in 2024, Mars One will send crews of four every two years.
Mars One will launch its first unmanned mission in 2018, six years before its scheduled date to send humans to Mars to establish permanent human settlement on the red planet.
Mars One believes that human dwelling is possible on the red planet with “existing technologies” readily available from industry leaders worldwide.
According to the proposed project, the first footprint on Mars will “activate” and “inspire” generations. 

No comments: