The Inspiration Mars spacecraft will fight the red planet’s high levels of radiation with the help of human excrement.
Project leader and millionaire explorer Dennis Tito recently announced plans to fly space tourists by Mars in 2018, and now the logistical challenged of that 501-day round trip flight are being revealed.
Scientists working on the project plan to use feces to stop radiation since human waste is a better blocker of radiation than man-made products.
Initially the Inspiration Mars spaceship will use bags lined with water to block out cosmic rays. As the spaceship travels towards Mars, human waste collected from bathroom use will eventually replace the water filled bags.
The human waste will be dehydrated with the help of polyethylene as it entered the spaceship, allowing for compacted protection from radiation. By dehydrating the human waste, the ship will be able to reclaim and purify water for drinking purposes. While drinking water purified from human excrement might now sound like your idea of a good time, it is extremely practical from a space travel point of view.
Dennis Tito and his team believe that since water-based materials stop radiation better than metal, they can not only create a working system but also provide a simpler life support system while maximizing space for supplies.
The Inspiration Mars spaceship is a massive undertaking when we consider the five year time span for launch. In comparison, President Obama has asked NASA to land its first astronauts on the red planet by 2033.
The Inspiration Mars project is still raising money, accepting ideas from the scientific community and working to secure passengers who would like to spend one and a half years of their lives in tight quarters aboard an experimental space shuttle.
Would you be willing to spend a large sum of money to visit Mars aboard an experimental spacecraft that was thought up and designed in just five years?