Moscow, Feb 12 (IANS/RIA Novosti) The crew of Mars-500 project, which aims to investigate how humans cope with psychological and physiological stress on a lengthy spaceflight, landed on the “surface” of the Red Planet Saturday.
The six-man multi-national crew has been sealed since June inside a mocked-up spaceship without sun or fresh water.
“The simulated touchdown was successfully completed at noon Moscow time [15:00 GMT],” said a spokesman for Russia’s Institute of Biomedical Problems that runs the project with the participation of the European Space Agency (ESA).
On Feb 14, three of the group – Alexander Smoliyevsky, Diego Urbina and Wang Yue – will descend onto the planet, don spacesuits and walk on its “surface”, which in reality will be the sandy floor inside a large hangar in Moscow.
After 30 days working on the Red Planet, the crew will then embark on a 240-day return trip to Earth.