The pioneer spirit is alive and well. At least it is for the final 100 candidates for the Dutch nonprofit Mars One’s planned martian colony.
Starting from a pool of 200,000 applicants, paring down to 100 finalists is only the first step. By the first planned launch in 2024 there will be 24 left. They will launch in six separate missions with four colonists and equipment in each. The launches will be spaced out one every two years.
The final 100 come from many walks of life but all share the same passion for the exploration of space. With what will be a one way trip that could be their most important feature. Now that they are closer to being chosen the candidates must deal with the reactions of their friends and families to the news. Two of the finalists shared their feelings herebut maintain that they are ready for the adventure.
Mars One still has many hurdles to overcome before that first launch. A $6 billion price tag must be raised through croudfunding, sponsorships and sales. Zeca Oliveira is aware that the success or failure of the unmanned missions in 2018 could become a factor. Most daunting of all the odds of survival have to be improved from the mere 68 days projected by a MIT study using modern day technology.