Mars One Monday - 2014/09/08

Mars One Monday rounds up the past week’s reports on the project to send people on a one-way journey to Mars.

Ticket to Rise

Last week Mars One announced a fundraising campaign that will conclude with one lucky member of the public riding a suborbital rocket plane. The “Ticket to Rise” campaign uses the Urgency Network’s social crowdfunding system to collect donations internationally. It provides rewards based on the value of the donation - a $25 donation gets a “Mars and Me Selfie”, for example, while $5000 donation gets access to the launch of Mars One’s robotic mission in 2018. For every dollar donated, you get 5 entries to the grand prize drawing - a trip for one on a Lynx suborbital rocketplane flight.

The Urgency Network gets around laws about sweepstakes by letting people make social media contributions rather than give money. Subscribing to tweets, watching videos, and other activities count as donations and qualify for the drawing.

Of course there’s a catch: XCor’s Lynx doesn’t exist yet. Flight testing isn’t scheduled to begin until later this year and commercial flights in 2015. 

Women on Mars

The latest post to Mars One’s blog, Mars Exchange, comes from Special Assistant to the NASA Administrator for Innovation and Public-Private Partnership advisor Dr. Rebecca Spyke Keiser. She talks about the historically low rate of participation in space exploration by women and what Nasa has been doing to attract more women into science and engineering careers.

Mars One Candidates in the News

In South Africa, the New Age and Fin24 discussed Divashen Govender’s candidacy while the South African Broadcasting Company broadcast an interview with the University of KwaZulu-Natal student.

Hampshire College professor Salman Hamid wrote in the Express Tribune about Mars settlement as a continuation of the human story begun in Africa millions of years ago.

The University of Pittsburgh’s campus newspaper published an opinion piece calling on Mars One to take a higher road when producing the televised selection process. The importance of developing the candidates’ skills, argues Bethel Habte, must take a priority over superficial entertainment typical of reality TV.

Colorado TV station KDVR interviewed Max Fagin, a Colorado native attending graduate school at Purdue University. Fagin talked about his participation in the US/Japanese team that won a recent Mars mission design contest.