NASA looks for ‘Martians’ on Earth for yearlong Mars simulation

Mars habitat

HOUSTON — NASA is on the search for “Martians.”

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They’re really looking for Earthlings who will live as if they were on the Red Planet for a year to simulate what a mission to Mars would be like.

The mission is the second of three called CHAPEA, or Crew Health and Performance Exploration Analog.

The first CHAPEA crew is about halfway through their stint, the agency said.

NASA said four volunteers will live and work inside a 1,700-square-foot habitat at Johnson Space Center in Houston.

Mars Dune Alpha, which was 3D printed, “simulates the challenges of a mission on Mars, including resource limitations, equipment failures, communication delays, and other environmental stressors.”

Crews will have to go on simulated spacewalks, conduct maintenance, exercise and grow crops while locked in the habitat.

There are a few requirements to join CHAPEA. Mission members must be:

  • U.S. citizens or permanent residents
  • Healthy
  • Non-smokers
  • 30-55 years old
  • Proficient in English to aid in effective communication

Candidates will need a master’s degree in a STEM field and two years of professional STEM experience or 1,000 hours piloting an aircraft. Two years of work towards a STEM doctoral program, a medical degree or a test pilot may be considered. If someone has four years of professional experience and has completed military officer training or has a STEM-related bachelor of science degree, they may also be considered.

You can apply on NASA’s CHAPEA website by April 2.