The ambitious project of establishing a permanent human settlement on Mars has again been criticized this week including by a man selected to have a chance to be the first human on Mars.
Mars One is the most controversial space project underway. Founded in 2011, Mars One has raised eyebrows among experts about their plans to bring humans to Mars in a one way mission. This week criticism of a scientist who is among the 100 people that have been pre-selected to be among the first to fly to Mars, brought Mars One back into the headlines. Joseph Roche wrote in an article on The Guardian that he thinks that selection process is unprofessional and partly based on the donation made to the Mars One project. In addition Roche criticizes that Mars One is not engaging with other scientists working in space habitation.
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Mr. Roche concludes: "I think that the shortcomings of the selection process, coupled with their unwillingness to engage and collaborate with the scientific community, means that the time might have come for Mars One to acknowledge the implausibility of this particular venture. They could then perhaps turn their efforts towards supporting other exciting and more viable space missions."
Mars One CEO Bas Landsdorp has smashed Roche statements in a video released by Mars One. He denies claims that Mars One applicants bought their way into the 100. Mr. Landsdrop is still confident that Mars One can pull off their mission to Mars, but had to admit a new 2 year delay in the planned schedule as raising funds takes longer than expected.
According to the new time table the first humans would arrive on Mars in 2027. Mr. Landsdrop also still holds onto the $6 billion budget for the Mars One mission. He still believes that this is enough for a one-way mission. NASA estimates $35 billion for a two-way mission in contrast.
The Mars One CEO says about the accomplishments so far: "Mars One has already achieved a lot. We have had our first contract with Paragon Space Development Corporation for the suits and life support systems, our first contract with Lockheed Martin for our unmanned mission, we have a very impressive board of ambassadors with a nobel prize laureate, and a great advisory board with people like Mason Peck, NASA’s former Chief Technologist."
If you are curious about who on earth would want to go to Mars, you can meet the 100 selected Mars astronauts in the video below. There was a reality TV show planned, but the current deal with the production company Endemol fell apart.
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