Mars One is an organization of four people, formed in secret in 2011. But now, having secured agreements with major industrial partners and support from well respected scientists, media specialists, and intellectuals, it has announced its plan: to colonize Mars in 2023.
“Our plan to go to Mars has evolved quite a bit since we started,” says co-founder Bas Lansdorp. “The next step is introducing the project to the world and securing sponsors and investors.”
The plan involves sending a series of four person crews on a one way trip to Mars. The first crew will be preceded by a robotic mission and supply vessels to prepare for their arrival. The venture will support itself financially by broadcasting all training and colonization activities as a form of space reality TV.
“This is not a mission we can imagine being attempted by current space programs,” said Gerard Blaauw, chairman of the Netherlands Space Society and Mars One ambassador, “but Mars One’s visionary idea to combine media and aerospace in such an innovative way means it is possible! True breakthroughs come from interweaving divergent domains, and that is what is happening here!”
This is not the first one way mission proposed for Mars from private players or even NASA. One such proposal published in the Journal of Cosmology in 2011 produced a startling 500 email responses from individuals volunteering for the journey. “It’s going to happen some way or another sometime. It may as well happen now,” said one such volunteer. And in an age of commercial space cargo and do it yourself spacecraft, who is to say but that it’s possible?
Watch Mars One’s introductory video below: