The MarsOne Project wants to send astronauts on a one-way trip to Mars, and they want to do it by 2023. How do they plan to pull it off? Simple: by creating "the biggest media event ever."
"Big brother will pale in comparison," explains theoretical physicist and Nobel laureate Gerard 't Hooft, who has expressed his support for the project.
The basic premise, which is explained in the introductory video up top, is as follows:
1. In 2023, the first four human settlers arrive on the surface of Mars, where they will live in living units and life-support units, previously established on the planet's surface by uncrewed rover missions .
2. Every two years, another group of settlers will make the one-way trip to the Red Planet.
3. Chronicle the entire project in a format not unlike a reality television series (the project has already received backing from Paul Römer, a co-founder and executive producer of the show Big Brother).
Granted, an endorsement from a Nobel Laureate and a brief introductory film aren't going to put the first Martian settlers in space, but if MarsOne really is in talks with various private companies like the video suggests, this project could just come to fruition.
Personally, my feelings regarding MarsOne are pretty mixed at this point. On one hand, it's hard not to get excited about the prospects of something as ambitious as deep-space colonization happening by 2023. On the other, does anyone else feel a little weirded out at the thought of the first Martian settlement being established under the banner of voyeuristic entertainment? [MarsOne via CBC]