New Mars Mission in Hawaii Begins

New Mars Mission in Hawaii Begins

New Mars Mission HI-SEAS VI has begun on top of a Volcano in Hawaii.

Mars is the most important planet of our Solar System, other than Earth, as a whole lot of efforts are being made to colonize it with Humans. A lot of people are working to make this dream, a REALITY. It is never going to be easy and everyone related to this project acknowledges it. Recently, the launch of Falcon Heavy from SpaceX.com was a step towards this mission.

It was probably the most anticipated launch of the decade as it is considered a major step in reaching Mars with a human delegation. Elon Musk, who is the CEO and Lead Designer of SpaceX, was ecstatic on this occasion as it is one of his foremost priority to make humans a multi-planetary species. Having said all this, the journey to Mars is a long one and the human behavior during that time is another question to answer.

Complete strangers will have to live in a confined environment for months. According to reports, the response of human behavior in such an environment is still unknown. This leaves a huge question mark that scientists will need to answer before sending out an expedition in space. For this purpose, a mock Mars mission commenced in Hawaii at 5 pm on 15th of February.

It is the 6th mission of its series as 5 missions have already been carried out in this research. This news came out from the sources of ‘Space.com’. It is a news website that specializes in space and astronomy. The news spread pretty rapidly as the astronomical world was very alert following Falcon Heavy’s story.

A special dome habitat has been established on the peak of Mauna Loa in Hawaii. It is used to provide the isolation that astronauts might experience during long-term exploration of space. A mission to Mars is such an example as this journey is months long where you are completely away from Earth and your loved ones. Four participants are included in this mission and for the first time ever, all of them are from different parts of the world. The nationalities of those individuals are Korean, Australian, Scottish and Slovakian. It is expected to be an 8-months long mission as announced by the University of Hawaii.

This mission is being conducted by ‘Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation project (HI-SEAS)’ which is housed inside University of Hawaii. This is a designated unit whose task is to analyze the requirements of keeping the flight crew happy during a long-duration journey to Mars. It also finds what is essential for a healthy stay on Mars.

Their analysis includes roles and performance, food, behavior and other dynamics of a space venture. Crew Dynamics is one of the most important things that is being studied by them under the guidance of NASA. Stress Management, Good Morale and Working in a Team are some common examples. In a statement, the principal investigator of HI-SEAS, Kim Binsted said,

“For humans to successfully undertake a long-duration spaceflight to Mars, it will require a global collaboration, and so it seems appropriate that our Mission VI begins with this spirit of internationalism.”

The participants of this mission will be kept in confined conditions. They will be provided simulated communication delays of about 20 minutes as this is the expected delay for a message between Earth and Mars. Their behavior will be closely monitored during that exercise to analyze the effects of isolation. It is expected that they will plan their lives in a regular manner by indulging in everyday activities like exercising and cooking.

The reason for diverse participants is to ensure that data is being collected for all type of humans. This will help to manage the expedition to Mars in the future if, scientists manage to devise life there on the red planet. The details of each participant clearly verify the point that they are not similar in any way.

·         Sukjin Han, Assistant Professor in Economics at University of Texas, Austin

·         Michaela Musilova, Astrobiologist and the Chair of the Slovak Organization for Space Activities

·         Lisa Stojanovski, Science Communicator of the Australian chapter of the Space Generation Advisory Council

·         Calum Hervieu, System Engineer from Rural Scotland

This newly initiated mission shows that scientists are determined to make life possible at Mars. Will their dream come true or not, only time will tell.

Computer Scientist by qualification who loves to read, write, eat, and travel

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