Mars mission to select astronauts, push launch back

- A company looking to send humans to Mars says that it plans to hire astronauts to train for the mission in 2017 as it, at the same time, announces delays in its timelines for the missions.

Mars One has issued an updated mission roadmap for their missions as they attempt to become a public company on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange.  It is hoping to raise 10 million Euro in a first round of funding.

The company plans to launch its first unmanned mission to Mars in 2022 and launch its first human crew in 2031.  Those dates are pushed back from an original timeline.

The 2022 mission will use the same platform design as the 2007 NASA Phoenix mission, according to the company, and plans to work with the same supplier (Lockheed Martin).

That will be followed in 2024 with a communications satellite being sent to Mars.  The company then hopes to send a rover to the planet in 2026 to select a settlement location.

In 2029 they hope to launch a second rover so that t rovers can prepare the settlement for the arrival of the manned crew. Life support systems will produce water and a breathable atmosphere before the first astronauts under the plan.

The first astronauts are expected to finish the 7 month trip in 2032 and a second crew would be launched two years later.

There are currently 100 astronaut candidates in Mars One’s selection process.  Next year, 3 to 6 groups of 4 crew members will be selected and hired full time to train for the mission.

The final mission crew would be selected in 2031 and the organizers hope to use a reality TV show to have viewers help select the final crew. 

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