As of May 7 - only two weeks into their application process - over 78,000 people have applied to become the first group of people move to Mars and never return to Earth.
Mars One, a Dutch organization dedicated to establishing a human settlement on Mars, says that it received applications from over 120 countries from people vying for the chance to become part of this historic mission. The online application process will close in August, with projections saying that as many as 500,000 people are likely to apply.
It's an interesting, if not sensational, story. But is it realistic? Can humans really survive on the Red Planet?
Well, as it's never been done before, the answer is "no one knows." What we do know, though, is not promising. As of right now, the world's space agencies have only sent unmanned robotic rovers to Mars.
According to The Age, there are some major drawbacks to this proposed mission. The "settlers" will be forced to live in a very small space and there is no known way to sustain food on Mars. Not to mention, they will have to endure huge amounts of radiation just to get to the planet. Mere survival is no small feat.
Mars One says it will screen applicants and then allow the final choice to be made by viewers of a reality television show. 24 candidates will be chosen and trained on television. Four will be cut. Applicants must be at least 18 years of age and in good health.The mission plans to depart for Mars in 2022 and land seven months later in 2023, never to return.