NASA outlines manned Mars vision

Artist's impression of astronaut on Mars. Image: NasaNASA has released details of its strategy for sending a human crew to Mars within the next few decades.

The US space agency envisages despatching a “minimal” crew on a 30-month round trip to the Red Planet in a 400,000kg (880,000lb) spacecraft.

Details of the concept were outlined at a meeting in Houston, Texas.

In January 2004, President George W Bush launched a programme for returning humans to the Moon by 2020 and – at an undetermined date – to Mars.

The “Mars ship” would be assembled in low-Earth orbit using three to four Ares V rockets – the new heavy-lift launch vehicle that Nasa has been developing.

Source:  BBC News

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