Would you star in a space reality show about Mars settlement if it meant you could never come home?
Because that’s what the MarsOne project is planning. And they are completely serious (as you can tell by the fact that a Nobel winner is involved, srsly).
Beginning in 2023, groups of four Earthlings are to be dropped on the Red Planet, and joined by a new foursome every two years after that. Rovers will prepare the settlement in advance, and the humans will show up a few years afterwards. But a return trip home is not part of the plan. Filming it is.
It reminds me of Bill Stone’s inspiring TED talk, where he called for interplanetary explorers that would be willing to only take enough fuel for the trip to distant moons, and not home. Or the (not true) story of Hernan Cortés burning his ships to fully commit his soldiers to the task of conquest. Failure is less of an option if it means that you also die.
They do claim to met with space firms around the world and have at least one potential supplier for each component of their project. And considering that exactly one company has successfully launched a private space vehicle to date, what could go wrong?
I’m impressed by their cojones, though. It’s a fine response to the call to action given in Neil deGrasse Tyson’s “We Stopped Dreaming”.
Would you go?