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A maverick millionaire obsessed with space travel vowed to send a manned mission to Mars, even announcing the date the rocket carrying one man and one woman would set off for the Red Planet: Jan. 5, 2018.

On that date, a preferably married couple yet to be chosen will enter a tiny space capsule for the longest date in history -- rocketing into the heavens and the record books, promised Dennis Tito, the brains behind The Inspiration Mars Foundation and the American businessman who paid about $20 million to visit the International Space Station in 2001 aboard a Russian spacecraft.

"This is humanity's first flight out to Mars, and humanity should be represented by both genders," Dennis Tito said.

"We hope that we can find a married couple. When you're out that far and the Earth is a tiny blue pinpoint, you're going to need someone you can hug. What better solution to the psychological problems you're going to encounter with that isolation?"

After a trip of about 140 million miles, the brave couple will be the first humans ever to peer out a window at Mars -- but not set foot there.

Their spacecraft will not stop on the surface of the planet, instead orbiting around the Red Planet at a distance of 100 miles out before using the planet?s gravity to slingshot back to the Earth, he said.

?This will be a Lewis and Clark mission to Mars,? explained Taber MacCallum, CEO for space development company Paragon and one of the scientists working on the Inspiration Mars program.

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I hope he can make it happen.

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^ I hope the Martians don't mind company.

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Dennis Tito, the billionaire philanthropist and former private space traveler, testified before a congressional committee, according to a November 20, 2013 account on NBC News, about his plan to send two space travelers on a mission around Mars called Inspiration Mars. After delving into various options concerning launch vehicles, Tito informed the members of the House Space Subcommittee that he would need the use of the heavy lift Space Launch System now under development by NASA for fulfill his plan. In total, $700 million in money or in kind is needed from NASA for the $1 billion project. The private sector would contribute the balance of the funding.

 

http://www.examiner.com/article/inspiration-mars-needs-nasa-s-space-launch-system-to-succeed

 

Sounds like a project never going to happen anymore!

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Is a manned mission really cost-effective if all you are going to see is what all the unmanned missions have already seen? I mean to get human eyes on the planet itself is not really worth the effort in my opinion. We already have pictures of what the outside of the planet looks like.

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as always. the man refuses to ask for direction. the woman nags the whole distance.

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considering a moon landing never happened, how can we expect a mission to mars?

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^ Watch Capricorn One :shifty:

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He should just wait for the FH or perhaps even the FX from SpaceX, then it will also be much cheaper, and they are probably going to fly before the SLS anyway, if it even gets off the ground at all.

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SLS is by no means a good bet. As it is NASA may have to make the choice between SLS and extending the ISS past 2020.

I'd rather they keep ISS and use commercdial options and on-orbit assembly, fuel depots etc. Not to mention SpaceX's next-gen methane fueled monster rocket. Engine component tests start very soon, and according to some rumors may already have.

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Is a manned mission really cost-effective if all you are going to see is what all the unmanned missions have already seen? I mean to get human eyes on the planet itself is not really worth the effort in my opinion. We already have pictures of what the outside of the planet looks like.

 

I dont think this mission has anything to do with looking at the planet, it is a stepping stone in the end goal. Proving that we can get people to the planet and back. If we cant fly people around the planet how are we going to get people to the surface.

 

Missions like this pave the way for real progress, without it the research will never be done and it will forever be unattainable.

 

I'm happy that he is willing to pay for this, as it helps the likes of NASA and other agencies spend money on other projects that are needed.

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as always. the man refuses to ask for direction. the woman nags the whole distance.

 

And then he keeps hoping he can get her drunk enough to land on Uranus.

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considering a moon landing never happened, how can we expect a mission to mars?

 

I hope that's sarcasm...

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I dont think this mission has anything to do with looking at the planet, it is a stepping stone in the end goal. Proving that we can get people to the planet and back. If we cant fly people around the planet how are we going to get people to the surface.

 

Missions like this pave the way for real progress, without it the research will never be done and it will forever be unattainable.

 

I'm happy that he is willing to pay for this, as it helps the likes of NASA and other agencies spend money on other projects that are needed.

This isn't the 60s, its too expensive to have multiple missions to do the same thing you can do with just one. Plus if you are going to spend that much money don't you think they should do more than go there and come back? We know we can get there, we don't need to waste money proving it. Research will happen regardless and it will most definitely be attainable.

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^ Watch Capricorn One :shifty:

 

Indeed. Whenever talk of manned missions to Mars comes up, it is the first thing which springs to mind.

 

At this stage, anyone volunteering for a Mars mission should be prepared for the fact that it is basically a suicide mission, with a remote chance of return which cannot be counted on.

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^ I hope the Martians don't mind company.

 

What if they do?

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This isn't the 60s, its too expensive to have multiple missions to do the same thing you can do with just one. Plus if you are going to spend that much money don't you think they should do more than go there and come back? We know we can get there, we don't need to waste money proving it. Research will happen regardless and it will most definitely be attainable.

 

Space travel today is actually much cheaper than in the 1960s and early 1970s. The numbers are higher, but the value is lower.

 

The Apollo program cost a total $110 billion (in today's dollars) over 15 years. That's compared to the very expensive Shuttle program, which cost a total $198 billion (in today's dollars) over 41 years and 134 missions.

 

In the late 1950s and throughout the 1960s and 1970s, nearly every single piece of space missions, let alone manned space missions, had to literally be invented or newly manufactured/created to make it possible. Today getting into space is relatively cheap and routine.

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SpaceX will be charging NASA ~$25-30M a seat for Dragon 2 crew missions to the ISS with 6 non-pilot seats available (normally using 4.) Soyuz rides are billed at ~$65M a seat with 2 non-pilot seats (normally using 1-2)

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send a man and a woman huh? well you know that 18 month round trip is going to drive them nuts and they will more then likely have or try to have sex... two leave, three come back

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This isn't the 60s, its too expensive to have multiple missions to do the same thing you can do with just one. Plus if you are going to spend that much money don't you think they should do more than go there and come back? We know we can get there, we don't need to waste money proving it. Research will happen regardless and it will most definitely be attainable.

 

I agree that the mission does seem to waste money by not doing anything productive, however we have never sent Humans that far out into the solar system, nobody has spent that long in space. The amount of data and information that will be gathered during this trip is massive. If they were going to do a land and retrieve mission, the time to plan/build/travel will be much more and the cost would double. 

 

As it is being paid for by a third party maybe he doesn't have the cash or time to wait.

 

It is also prompting a race amongst the community, which is always a good thing in getting things done.  

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Ow well, the likelyness of this mission ever happning has been pretty much curbed anyway now that NASA gave Tito a "Tnx, but no!"

 

Poor Tito, from bad ass first ever space tourist to the guy that wanted to fly to Mars but couldn't get anybody to pay for it!

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