Despite there being no way get home again, thousands have rushed to sign themselves up to Mars One.
The highly ambitious project aims to send humans to live on Mars by 2022, despite the fact that NASA's plans won't see a manned mission to the Red Planet until at least the 2030s. Mars One aims to solve the problem of a difficult return mission by simply not offering a way for the astronauts to return at all, a decision that will mean that those who have signed up may be committing themselves to a suicide mission. By the time applicants close on August 31st the company is expecting as many as 500,000 sign-ups.
"Gone are the days when bravery and the number of hours flying a supersonic jet were the top criteria for selection," said Mars One chief medical director Norbert Kraft. "Now, we are more concerned with how well each astronaut works and lives with the others–and for a lifetime of challenges ahead."
"An ambitious project to establish a human colony on Mars has attracted applications from tens of thousands of would-be astronauts, just two weeks after applications opened."
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