Mars Is Calling! NASA Is Recruiting for Yearlong Simulated Mars Mission

Mars Dune Alpha Conceptual Render Crop

Conceptual Mars habitat rendering.

Mars is calling! NASA is seeking applicants for participation as a crew member during the first one-year analog mission in a habitat to simulate life on a distant world, set to begin in Fall 2022.

As NASA ventures farther into the cosmos, the astronaut experience will change. In preparation for the real-life challenges of future missions to Mars, NASA will study how highly motivated individuals respond under the rigor of a long-duration, ground-based simulation.

The series of missions – known as Crew Health and Performance Exploration Analog – includes three one-year Mars surface simulations based at NASA’s Johnson Space Center. The analogs will support research to develop methods and technologies to prevent and resolve potential problems on future human spaceflight missions to the Moon and Mars.

“The analog is critical for testing solutions to meet the complex needs of living on the Martian surface,” said Grace Douglas, lead scientist for NASA’s Advanced Food Technology research effort at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. “Simulations on Earth will help us understand and counter the physical and mental challenges astronauts will face before they go.”

Each mission will consist of four crew members living and working in a 1,700-square-foot (160-square-meter) module 3D-printed by ICON, called Mars Dune Alpha. The habitat will simulate the challenges of a mission on Mars, including resource limitations, equipment failure, communication delays, and other environmental stressors. Crew tasks may include simulated spacewalks, scientific research, use of virtual reality and robotic controls, and exchanging communications. The results will provide important scientific data to validate systems and develop solutions.

NASA is looking for healthy, motivated U.S. citizens or permanent residents who are non-smokers, age 30 to 55 years old, and proficient in English for effective communication between crew and mission control. Crew selection will follow standard NASA criteria for astronaut candidate applicants.

A master’s degree in a STEM field such as engineering, mathematics, or biological, physical, or computer science from an accredited institution with at least two years of professional STEM experience or a minimum of one thousand hours piloting an aircraft is required. Candidates who have completed two years of work toward a doctoral program in STEM, or completed a medical degree, or a test pilot program will also be considered. Additionally, with four years of professional experience, applicants who have completed military officer training or a Bachelor of Science in a STEM field may be considered.

If you have a strong desire for unique, rewarding adventures and are interested in contributing to NASA’s work in preparing for the first human journey to Mars, click here to learn more and apply. Compensation for participating is available. More information will be provided during the candidate screening process.

7 Comments on "Mars Is Calling! NASA Is Recruiting for Yearlong Simulated Mars Mission"

  1. The different groups running these things need to mix up the requirements a little. All they are going to find is that doctorate-level gold medalists can survive in a large variety of conditions.

  2. Hahah….You are right, Neil B, but if that’s what you send then that’s what you test… But i did like your phraseology!

    • Send 3 and yeah, you’ll want the best of the best. Send 50 or 100 and you’ll want someone to clean the toilets and change the light bulbs and a sheriff to break up cabin fever fights. And seeing as this is being investigated now, the psychologists don’t really have much of an excuse for late homework.

  3. dont really care | August 8, 2021 at 4:29 pm | Reply

    masters degrees, pilots, no wonder they cant figure anything out. They are approaching every problem with a mindset of “thinking they already know everything”
    Get some street smart people in there with real world experience and watch how they would figure things out. There is a reason why tesla is so succesful. He doesnt rely on just engineers or academics to come up with ideas, just solutions. Nasholes will never learn that.
    When its all said and done, you better have some guys with duct tape on that ship going to mars.

    • Sorry to be pedantic, but surley yoi mean Musk, Tesla has been dead for quite some time, and history proves he wasn’t very successful.

  4. No human should be allowed what u should do is take a look at ai send a human like robot Controlled by human for example . send a human crew to mars orbit using some what signal like WiFi via blue tooth and have a human control the humanoid from orbit using satalites if anything u should really look at video gamer’s for candidates .also take a look at fictional
    Comeic book stories and real life events and strategicly figure something out as far as life goes take some rats snakes and some insects along with some plants with the humanoid. And if u can’t survive in orbit at least find a way to control the humanoid from our space station

  5. Haha, I sold my cabin and have been living in my garage in north pole alaska since 2008 with no windows, and running on solar, and have been used to the darkness of Alaska since 1986. So I think I have a huge advantage over living in extreme conditions. My other job of chemical coatings I remember going from a 160 degrees paint booth to 57 below zero outside to warm up my car. I wasn’t wearing a spacesuit but I was pretty close. For all purposes Alaska may as well be an alien planet. LoL

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