Press Release

Mars Society Launches Translife Mission Project

By SpaceRef Editor
August 30, 2001
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At its Stanford convention, the Mars Society resolved to commit its resources
to initiate the Translife Mission as its first spaceflight mission project.
The Translife mission will consist of a Mars-level (0.38 g)artificial gravity
spacecraft carrying a crew of mice (and possibly other animals and plants) in
low Earth orbit for a period of roughly two months. During this period, the
mice will be allowed to reproduce and the young will develop into adults. The
spacecraft will then be brought down to Earth, and both the original crew and
their progeny will be examined.

The mission will:

1. Validate the miniature artificial-gravity spacecraft and life support
system for further missions.

2. Establish whether Mars-level artificial gravity can serve as an effective
countermeasure for mammals against the physiological deterioration that
accompanies long-duration spaceflight in zero gravity. Answering this
question is key for planning human expeditions to the Red Planet.

3. Establish whether mammals from Earth can be born and develop into proper
adults in Mars gravity conditions. Answering this question is key to
establishing whether humans and other life from Earth can ultimately settle
Mars, and by implication, other planets with gravity substantially less than
that of the Earth.

Follow-on missions could include flights into deep space, possibly as far as
the orbit of Mars.

Individuals or organizations willing to volunteer talent, hardware, or cash
in support of the Translife mission should write the Translife Project, Mars
Society, Box 273, Indian Hills, CO 80454. All donations are tax deductible.

Robert Zubrin

SpaceRef staff editor.