Saturday, May 23, 2015

Private Mars Mission: manages Mars One to the Red Planet? – Business Week

Katja Köllen

Mars One has a revolutionary goal: Already in 2027 are the first humans to colonize the Red Planet. But how realistic the project is really? A fact check.

After the moon comes Mars. Until mankind pursued by only how Mars rover Curiosity photos, facts and figures sent the Red planet. But the plans to send humans to Mars itself, to be more specific.

While the NASA research for decades, but still does not mention a date, and fiddle even millionaire entrepreneurs like Elon Musk to own missions, dashing a private foundation from the Netherlands ahead. Mars One wants to fly in a few years to Mars and even colonize the planet. Your flight into the unknown, more than 200,000 people have reportedly advertised -. Although the return is excluded

The Mars One project is controversial. As it should be financed if the technical knowledge for it at all sufficient and what is expected of the potential Mars settlers is hotly debated. The WiWo Fact Check checks whether the Dutch vision of people or merely a reverie realistic on Mars.

The cost

The launch of the private project was initially funded using a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo and so known worldwide.

Successful collected Mars One of 8151 supporters more than $ 313,000 a. Whether there are sponsors and what they are, about the Foundation says little publicly. For “Mars Business Club”, who calls supportive company, in any case are mainly small businesses from the media world – including Sonic Voyage (a Dutch film production) or byte (a Dutch hosting provider). The big global players that could really provide financial backing, missing – or at least not mentioned.

Additional source of income are donations and the Mars One fan shop. In addition, a television project for gold mine to be. Cameras are namely accompanied the entire mission media. While the Mars One-makers speak of a scientific report series, Detractors say the idea like “Mars-Big Brother.” – Mainly because initially a subsidiary of Big Brother creator Endemol was for the TV project on board

is planning the Mars One Foundation

  • 2015

    This year is the training for the Astronauts begin first. For the Mars settlement will be recreated on Earth for training purposes.

  • 2020

    The supply mission begins: SpaceX to transport equipment such as solar panels on Mars. Also, the first communications satellite to be sent into the orbit of Mars’.

  • 2022

    Two Mars rovers are scheduled to arrive on Mars. Using the first Rovers the right place to be explored for the Mars-one settlement. The second is to transport the landing capsules. Another satellite will circle Mars to ensure a permanent and stable communication between Earth and Mars.

  • 2024

    The first six Dragon modules – the future habitats – should make their way to Mars

  • 2025

    Of the six Dragon modules, including life support systems, living capsules, a bearing capsule and another Mars Rover belong to the transport Rover are brought into the settlement site and put into operation there in order to make the residential area inhabitable.

  • 2026

    It should be so far: With the SpaceX rocket, the first four settlers are to be shot on the Mars and become the first settlers on Mars

  • 2027

    The next modules to Mars. In addition, after a year travel to the first colonists group arrive on Mars, which then take on the settlement in operation and build the settlement for the next group Mars settlers.

Six billion dollars it will cost, according to Mars One, the first four astronauts to fly to Mars – including of previous spending on the preparations and material shipments to the Red Planet.

Many experts believe that Mars One completely beside it with this estimate. In order to raise the costs of missiles, settlement construction and supply technology, four times is necessary. “If you extrapolate that, then the costs are much higher than the six billion for infrastructure and one is also far behind schedule,” says Ralf Jaumann the Institute of Planetary Research of the German Aerospace Center (DLR).

The NASA approximately assumes that such a project is likely to cost more than ten times the amount quoted by Mars One to landing the first Mars colonists. A study by the Space Agency in 2009 estimated the cost of a manned mission to Mars to $ 100 billion.

Mars-One CEO Bas Lansdorp justified the difference with one crucial detail of the mission: NASA calculate a return trip with a. “If a return to Earth is planned much larger rocket must be built and more technology to be developed – such a system to start from Mars.” Abandoning the return flight make the Mars One mission easier and more affordable. “This makes our plans at all possible,” said Lansdorp. “Both in terms of risk, the financial, but also in terms of technology.”

On Wednesday, the German astronaut Alexander Gerst is flying to the International Space Station. But the days of billion-dollar prestige project are counted. The space of the future has other plans.

The many experts see differently. Including Jaumann: “If you want to bring a decent landing mission to Mars unmanned, will cost the now three billion and I do not think you can hinbringen people just for twice there.”

Even if Mars One of the cost-coup succeeds: The estimated sum has still not come together despite crowdfunding, donations, sponsors and PR avalanches. This has a massive impact on the schedule.

Originally supposed to land the first crew in 2025 on Mars. Because the current round of financing, however, was not successful as quickly as hoped, this date has already been postponed – on 2027. A financial close, there was not always, Mars One admits. But by the summer should the financing be secured, says Mars One boss Lansdorp.


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