A few weeks ago we wrote about Dennis Tito, the first paying passenger to go into space. Earlier this year, Tito announced the formation of the Inspiration Mars Foundation, a nonprofit organisation with a very specific short-term objective: sending a two-person American crew on a historic journey within 100 miles around the Red Planet and return to Earth safely. Tito has experience with this type of flyby missions from his days as a scientist at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory but this one pushes the envelope much further – no human has ever traveled to another planet.
Also interesting is that the Foundation is pushed for time to reach its objective – in 2018 both planets (Earth and Mars) will align, offering a unique orbit opportunity to travel to Mars and back in just 501 days. You can check out the announcement made earlier this year below:
As Tito says during the announcement, space is very complex and there is a lot to learn, even when the outline of the mission is simple. More on the Inspiration Mars Foundation soon hopefully, as they get closer to their objective!