A team of scientists has suggested that a step-wise approach can send humans to Mars in a much efficient and economical way.
The new, cost-constrained U.S. strategy to send humans on Mars could be achieved within projected NASA budgets by minimizing new developments and relying mainly on already available or planned NASA assets.
Coauthors Hoppy Price, John Baker, and Firouz Naden, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA, propose a long-term, stepwise series of missions to Mars that would begin with a crew landing on Mars’s moon Phobos in 2033 and followed by a short-stay mission in 2039 and a year-long landing in 2043.
In the Editorial ‘We Can Send Humans to Mars Safely and Affordably,’ Editor-in-Chief G. Scott Hubbard, Stanford University, describes the complex engineering, safety and health issues related to long-term space travel that have already been overcome.
Hubbard added that with all of these previous technical and fiscal issues addressed, they can again believe that the dream of sending people to Mars is alive. The next step is to build a broad consensus around the goal and strategy for a long term, humans to Mars program.
The study appears in New Space.