Mars One—the Danish non-profit with the goal of sending humans on a one-way trip to Mars—made waves earlier this year when 100 finalists were selected from a pool of 200,000 candidates.
Since the announcement, the program has been plagued with criticism over it's financing and proposed timeline. One astrophysicist that made the final cut went so far as to say that the whole thing was a giant scam to get money and sponsorships.
This week, NASA added to the growing skepticism of the project when it's chief administrator Charles Bolden told a House Committee hearing that "No commercial company without the support of NASA and government is going to get to Mars."
While the Mars One project may prove to be unfeasible, Bolden's comment ignores the fact that space exploration is moving away from government control and toward startups like SpaceX, which has been able to bring private enterprise to space exploration.
Reason TV recently sat down with a Mars One finalist to talk about the opportunities of private space exploration and why she's willing to give her life to travel to Mars. Produced by Paul Detrick. Approximately 4 minutes. Original release date was April 8, 2015 and the original writeup is below.
Ever wanted to go to Mars? People have fantasized about what it may be like for decades.
"Everybody thought the idea was crazy," says filmmaker Mead McCormick, one of the 100 finalists chosen to go to the red planet through the Mars One mission. "I sincerely did not think it was a crazy idea, so I thought that probably meant I should apply."
Mars One is the Danish non-profit that hopes to fund a human mission to Mars through billions of dollars worth of media deals and sponsorships. The idea is that four humans will start a settlement and live the rest of their lives there, with more humans to follow later.
"I think a big part of the mission itself and the Mars One program […] is to inspire humanity, and I think exploration does that," says McCormick, who also says that a mission to Mars would be similar to the harsh winters and isolated existence of explorers of the new world. "It broadens our horizons, it makes us learn new perspectives and new ways of thinking about what we know."
If you've been following the news about Mars One, you know that the non-profit has garnered criticism lately over its applicant pool, technical capabilities, and funding. CEO Bas Lansdorp responded to criticism in a YouTube video, defending the program and announcing that the project would be delayed by two years.
Approximately 3:30 minutes.
Produced by Paul Detrick. Shot by Alexis Garcia.
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