US space agency NASA is recruiting four people to live in a simulated Martian exploration habitat in order to prepare them for the real-life challenges of future missions to the red planet.
"Mars is calling! NASA is seeking applicants for participation as a crew member during the first one-year analog mission in a habitat to simulate life on a distant world, set to begin in Fall 2022", a press release stated.
Nasa is planning three of these missions - known as Crew Health and Performance Exploration Analog - with the first one starting in fall (September 1-November 30) next year.
Each mission will consist of four crew members living and working in a 1,700-square-foot module called Mars Dune Alpha, which was created by a 3D-printer and is housed inside a building at Johnson Space Center in Houston. The habitat will simulate the challenges of a mission on Mars, including resource limitations, equipment failure, communication delays, and other environmental stressors. Crew tasks may include simulated spacewalks, scientific research, use of virtual reality and robotic controls, and exchanging communications. The results will provide important scientific data to validate systems and develop solutions.
“This is the highest-fidelity simulated habitat ever constructed by humans,” said Jason Ballard, co-founder and CEO, ICON. “Mars Dune Alpha is intended to serve a very specific purpose--to prepare humans to live on another planet. We wanted to develop the most faithful analog possible to aid in humanity's dream to expand into the stars. 3D printing the habitat has further illustrated to us that construction-scale 3D printing is an essential part of humanity's toolkit on Earth and to go to the Moon and Mars to stay. ”
“The analog is critical for testing solutions to meet the complex needs of living on the Martian surface” said Grace Douglas, lead scientist for NASA’s Advanced Food Technology research effort at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. “Simulations on Earth will help us understand and counter the physical and mental challenges astronauts will face before they go.”
No word yet on what sort of recruiting tech stack they'll be using in low-g. One would assume any applicant tracking system or candidate relationship management tool would need an Uhuru-level of language fluency. You know: in case of challenging applicants.
iCIMS's language packs might need to have some add-on modules to handle higher-stress situations. Word is they're working on it.
If you're thinking "Mars needs recruiters", here's the high-level requirements list:
Think you've got the right stuff? Apply here
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