The participants in a simulated Mars expedition will "take off" for a 520-day "space trip" on Thursday, a spokesman for the Moscow Institute of Medical and Biological Problems said.
Six people will take part in the experiment in the Mars-500 module, which will simulate all aspects of a journey to the Red Planet, with a 250-day trip there, a 30-day stay on its surface, and a 240-day return flight, Pavel Morgunov said.
The exploration of Mars has been an important part of the space exploration programs of the Soviet Union, the United States, Europe, and Japan. It has become a focus of the U.S. space program as President Barack Obama scrapped the lunar program earlier this year.
During nearly two years of isolation, the crew members will experience many of the conditions likely to be encountered by astronauts on a real space flight, except for radiation and weightlessness.
Three of the six crew members will leave the "spacecraft" and "walk" on Mars, becoming the first people to "set foot" on the Red Planet.
Each of the crew members will receive about 3 million rubles ($100,000) for participating in the mission, which is headed by Russia's Alexei Sityev.
The crew will communicate with Earth via e-mails with a 40-minute delay, Morgunov said. The crew's "spacecraft" is equipped with a laboratory, living area, warehouse and mini-garden.
The project initially involved 11 candidates: seven candidates from Russia and one each from China, France, Italy and Belgium. Three Russians, a Frenchman, a Chinese, and an Italian have been selected to take part in the mission.
MOSCOW, June 3 (RIA Novosti)
The fact of registration and authorization of users on Sputnik websites via users’ account or accounts on social networks indicates acceptance of these rules.
Users are obliged abide by national and international laws. Users are obliged to speak respectfully to the other participants in the discussion, readers and individuals referenced in the posts.
The websites’ administration has the right to delete comments made in languages other than the language of the majority of the websites’ content.
In all language versions of the sputniknews.com websites any comments posted can be edited.
A user comment will be deleted if it:
The administration has the right to block a user’s access to the page or delete a user’s account without notice if the user is in violation of these rules or if behavior indicating said violation is detected.
Users can initiate the recovery of their account / unlock access by contacting the moderators at firstname.lastname@example.org
The letter must contain:
If the moderators deem it possible to restore the account / unlock access, it will be done.
In the case of repeated violations of the rules above resulting in a second block of a user’s account, access cannot be restored.
To contact the team of moderators, write to email@example.com