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YEKATERINBURG, January 20. /ITAR-TASS/. Fifteen Russians from Kaliningrad, Voronezh, Chelyabinsk, St. Petersburg, Khimki and other cities are now on the list of would-be participants in a bizarre-looking international Mars colonization project, called Mars One, alongside more than one thousand enthusiasts. The list was released Monday on the project’s official site.
“I am specializing in microbiology and immunology,” said Anastasia Barkhatova in Chelyabinsk, a city east of the Urals. “I think my knowledge may be applicable in Mars research.”
According to the official site, all candidates were to fill in a registration form of several sections, among them a motivation letter and to record a short introduction video of no more than 70 seconds. All resumes - and a total of 250,000 of them or more have poured in from around the world - were placed on the official site for voting. The final short list carries the names of 1,058 candidates, who are now to go through two more tests later this year for filling vacancies in 6-10 four-member groups. The process is to be completed by 2015.
This private project, led by scientist Bas Lansdorp, was approved by the 1999 winner of the Nobel Prize in Physics Gerard ‘t Hooft. The first consignment of equipment is to head for space later this year. 2018 should see a research all-terrain vehicle landing on Mars to find the optimal location for a future settlement. Two accommodation facilities, two units of life necessities, a power supply unit and a second Mars rover are to be delivered to Mars in 2021. By 2033 the populace should reach 20.
Specialists at Russia’s Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre are curious what resources are to be used for the implementation of this project.
“None of the current delivery vehicles is capable of reaching Mars,” the center’s press office reported. “According to Russia’s manned space flight plans, a mission to Mars might be possible no earlier than 2030.”