Interested in contributing to a successful manned Mars mission?

| August 16, 2021

A graphic concept of a Mars research and exploration base. (ICON)

NASA is looking for volunteers to live and work, for a year, in a simulated Mars environment. Volunteers will perform tasks, duties, and experiments, that are expected to be performed once we have a manned mission on the Martian surface. Researchers will gather information on the participants, and on their performance, that they hope could be used to design actual missions to Mars.

From NASA:

“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 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.

NASA has more information here. If you are interested, or you know someone who might be interested, here is how one could volunteer.

Category: NASA

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No per diem? Forget it.

Jeff LPH 3, 63-66

And what will they have for desert? Mars candy bars.


I’d nominate Lars with a waiver for education but I’m afraid every other volunteer would desert after the 1st day.


Tried something similar once. Worked out as expected.


Oh, but I do 2nd Berliner’s nomination…


When they need a cold beer taste tester, call me.


I hope it works out better than this did:


No. But I nominate Commie-czar-ZEK. Except maybe his Momma – NO wait! He doesn’t have a Momma – he was hatched. Yeah, nobody would miss him. Send Commie-czar-ZEK and maybe we’ll all have better weather and be able to breathe again without wanting to PUKE. Just say’n…

The Stranger

I’m actually considering putting in an application for this. I have to discuss it with the wife; that could go either way. I’m too damn old and too damn blind (hat tip to LTC Frank Slade, United States Army, Retired) to be an astronaut, but this would most likely be the next best thing. What’s the worst that could happen, they turn me down?🤣

The Stranger

Well, that’s out of the question. I take BP meds so that’s disqualifying and since I’ve lost most of my hearing in one ear due to a Vestibular Schwannoma, I probably couldn’t pass the required flight physical, that’s the double whammy. Oh well.

President Elect Toxic Deplorable Racist SAH Neanderthal B Woodman Domestic Violent Extremist SuperStraight

“30 to 55”. Well, that leaves me out. I’m closer to the 30+55.

President Elect Toxic Deplorable Racist SAH Neanderthal B Woodman Domestic Violent Extremist SuperStraight

Damn! When I first head the header, I thought, “Kewl! Going to Mars! Want success? Send UpChuck, PeeLousi, AOC, Jarret, and BHO! They may fail the first time, but we’re SURE to get it right the next time!”

Green Thumb

I nominate the False Commander “Phony” Phil Monkress (CEO of All-Points Logistics).

There will inevitably be posers on Mars so why not start now!


Biden, Harris, Pelosi, etc.
Like Florida…. “God’s waiting room planet. “