It is no secret that NASA and the other space agencies worldwide are already preparing for humans to go to Mars. It may seem like a lot of work, and it will be a long trip, but it is possible.
One thing that astronomers and scientists would want to know is how well humans can adapt to the environment in the Red Planet. Another is how well humans can deal with being inside a cramped spacecraft for months.
Because of the concerns of NASA about the adaptability of humans, the agency now wants to hire a couple of suitable participants to spend eight months in a small spacecraft that will resemble the one that they are planning to launch in the future.
The said experiment will take place in Moscow, Russia and it will follow the same experiment done in the past wherein 6 people sent 4 months in confined quarters.
There won't be any social isolation involved in the experiment, as the participants will still be able to talk to the people outside of the spacecraft. What is just required from the crew is that they stay inside the fake spacecraft for 8 months straight so that scientists can observe and study the effects of being confined for a long time on humans.
NASA deemed this project necessary because even though the agency has been sending humans to the International Space Station, the space station is larger than one thinks.
There are several modules and areas for recreation, science, and downtime and there are a lot of things to do when a person is sent to the ISS. The first humans to be sent to Mars will experience something very different as they won't be locked in their seats for eight months but they won't have the kind of freedom that ISS astronauts get.
For those who are interested to participate in the study, here are NASA's requirements: "NASA is looking for highly motivated U.S. citizens who are 30-55 years old and are proficient in both Russian and English languages. Requirements are M.S., PhD., M.D., or completion of military officer training. Participants with a Bachelor's degree and other certain qualifications (e.g., relevant additional education, military, or professional experience) may be acceptable candidates as well."
The requirements are going to select people who will be perfect for the experiment. As for the payment, there is no precise detail announced by the agency, but NASA promises the participants that there will be compensation of different levels and it will depend on whether the participant is connected to the agency or if the participant is an employee or contractor of NASA.
Also, before the experiment starts, the participant will be in isolation for four months to study. NASA wants humans to be able to reach Mars by 2022. The trip to the Red Planet will take around seven months, which is longer than the trip that astronauts take on the International Space Station.
The exact length of the trip will also depend on when it is taken. Because both Earth and Mars have different orbits and their orbits are not circular, the exact time that it takes to travel between the two planets will take around 6 to 8 months.