Six men have sequestered themselves in an assemblage of four tightly proportioned, hermetically sealed modules, where they'll remain till November 2011, and pretend they're flying to Mars and back.
This summer, European Space Agency will lock six "crew members" in close quarters to role-play as if actually en route to the Red Planet. For 520 days.
Euro-sextet ends a simulated Mars mission after 105 days sealed into a facility designed to mimic a potential spacecraft built to fly to Mars and back.
Nobody sealed into an oversized tin can should smile that much, but apparently these six astronaut role players really, really love their jobs.
In a Russian research facility, six men are closed into spacecraft-like quarters for 105 days to see how a crew might fare on a trip to the Red Planet. And that's the short trial run.
What happens when you stick six wannabe astronauts in crammed quarters in the middle of nowhere for months? A NASA-funded study seeks to find out.
Unbeknownst to many, the European Space Agency has been conducting a 17-month mission to Mars, which ended today with the astronauts' safe return. Yes, it was slightly simulated.
We're still decades away from a manned mission to the Red Planet, but researchers in Russia want to make sure we're ready for the claustrophobic voyage.
Exploration of the Red Planet will shift into a higher gear in 2012 with the arrival of a car-sized, instrument-laden robotic rover named Curiosity.
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