Mars colonists 'would die after 68 days'
Scientists at MIT conclude a human colony on the Red Planet is "not feasible" with current technology
Humans could only survive on Mars for 68 days according to a new study which throws doubt on ambitions to colonise the Red Planet.
Scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) concluded that with current technology a permanent settlement on Mars is "not feasible".
They analysed the Dutch-based Mars One project which is aiming to colonise the planet starting in 2024.
Mars One wants to send a group of people on a one-way trip and film the project for a reality television show.
The MIT researchers simulated the conditions of living on Mars and identified the main problem as the plan for colonists to grow and eat their own crops, which they said was not practical with current technology.
In a 35-page report they said: "The first crew fatality would occur approximately 68 days into the mission.
"Some form of oxygen removal system is required, a technology that has not yet been developed for space flight."
Scientists also said the amount of spare parts that would have to be brought in to keep the colony functioning could also make the cost prohibitive.
Mars is 34 million miles from Earth and it would take at least seven months to get there.
The MIT study concluded: "We look forward to the day when humanity becomes an interplanetary species.
"We have great respect for the enthusiasm for space exploration that the Mars One program has generated and our goal is not to detract from this, but rather to drive it forward, towards enabling affordable, sustainable Mars colonisation."
Mars One chief executive Bas Lansdorp said the researchers had used incomplete data and it was possible for the colonists to grow their own food.
He said: "While oxygen removal has never been done in space I disagree that the technology is not mostly ready to go to Mars."
Quelle: The Telegraph