We went on a fake Mars mission in Hawaii

Before we can send humans to Mars, we’ll need to select people who can live and work together in an extreme and distant environment. So how do we figure that out? One way is to re-create Mars here on Earth.

That’s where HI-SEAS comes in. It’s a fake interplanetary habitat located on an active volcano on Hawaii’s Big Island. From 2013 to 2018, the University of Hawaii operated simulated Martian missions inside the habitat. For months at a time, people would live inside HI-SEAS, re-creating the conditions they might experience during a Mars mission. That meant conserving water, eating preserved foods, and simulating the delay in radio communications between Earth and Mars. They also couldn’t go outside of the habitat unless they were…

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Author: Loren Grush