WE DID IT!! MarsVR Kickstarter Reaches Its Funding Target!!

Thanks to your help, we are very happy to announce that late last night the Mars Society reached (and surpassed) its MarsVR Kickstarter goal of $27,500!!  There are new stretch goals available to boost our MarsVR project and its scope even further, with a few days still remaining in the Kickstarter campaign. If we raise $35,000, we will increase the amount of terrain we will have in the Phase 1 virtual environment by 25%. That means instead of one square… READ MORE >

NASA Kilopower Chief Designer to Speak at Mars Society Convention

The Mars Society is pleased to announce that Dr. David Poston, the chief designer of NASA’s new Kilopower space nuclear power reactor, will give a plenary talk to the 21st Annual International Mars Society Convention, which will be held at the Pasadena Convention Center, August 23-26, 2018. The Kilopower project is a near-term technology effort to develop preliminary concepts and technologies that could be used for an affordable fission nuclear power system to enable long-duration stays on planetary surfaces, including… READ MORE >

A Message from Dr. Robert Zubrin regarding the MarsVR Program

Hello Everyone, Virtual Reality and the creation of VR tools to support the human exploration of Mars is a strategic focus of The Mars Society. We intend to demonstrate the potential of VR to allow millions of people to directly participate in Mars exploration. Our VR tools will support the training of our crews at the Mars Desert Research Station, promote STEM education, and will help instill broad public support of human Mars exploration. To this end, we have established… READ MORE >

Call for Volunteers for Sirius Mission

The Institute for Biomedical Problems (IBMP), jointly with Human Research Program NASA (HRP NASA), will be conducting an extended duration lunar mission simulation at its facility in Moscow in 2019 and 2020. The mission, known as Sirius, will involve a crew of six, including three Russians and three non-Russians. IBMP has  asked the Mars Society to recruit the three non-Russian crew members. The mission duration will be four months during 2019 and eight months in 2020. Crew members will need to be available… READ MORE >

Advice to the New NASA Administrator

Demand a Purpose-Driven Space Program On April 19, 2018, Jim Bridenstine was finally confirmed as the new NASA administer, taking over the agency after more than a year (arguably more than nine years) of leaderless drift. Now that the one-time Navy pilot and Oklahoma congressman has had a few weeks to settle into his office and see what is going on, I feel it is an opportune time to offer some advice. So here it is: Dear Administrator Bridenstine; Congratulations… READ MORE >

Mars Society Convention to Receive TESS Update from Project Manager Jeff Volosin

Always keeping an eye on the sky beyond the Red Planet, the Mars Society is pleased to announce that Jeffrey Volosin, Project Manager of NASA Goddard Space Flight Center’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS), will provide the upcoming 21st Annual International Mars Society Convention with a full update on the new mission to search for exoplanets. Launched last month, the TESS spacecraft is expected to monitor more than 200,000 stars for temporary drops in brightness caused by planetary transits, with… READ MORE >

Finalists Chosen for Red Eagle Student Engineering Contest

The finalists have been selected for the Mars Society’s Red Eagle International Student Engineering Contest. The competition, open to student engineering teams from around the world, is to design a lander capable of delivering 10 metric tons of payload to the Martian surface. Out of 15 teams entering, five have now been selected to compete in the final round before a panel of distinguished judges on Saturday, August 25th at the 21st Annual International Mars Society Convention, which is being… READ MORE >

Mars Society Chapter Opens in Ukraine

The Mars Society is pleased to announce that a new international chapter – Mars Society Ukraine – was officially established today during an inaugural meeting in Kiev. Approximately 20 people gathered to hear Mars Society President Dr. Robert Zubrin address the group (via Skype) about current planning for human Mars exploration. For more details about Mars Society Ukraine, please visit the group’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/marssocietyua…. READ MORE >

A Call to Former MDRS Crew Members

The Mars Society has welcomed approximately 1,000 crew members to its Mars Desert Research Station in Utah over the past 15 (+) years. Many former crew members have obviously moved on to other schools, institutions and companies in pursuit of their professional careers and research goals.   We’re in the process of updating our MDRS crew alumni list and would appreciate any former crew member reading this announcement to reach out to us to provide your current contact information (name,… READ MORE >

FAR-Mars Society Student Rocket Launch Contest Held in Mojave

Over the weekend the Friends of Amateur Rocketry (FAR) and the Mars Society held an exciting student rocket launch competition at the FAR launch site in California’s Mojave Desert. Announced last year, the rocket contest invited college engineering teams from around the world to compete for $100,000 in prizes, with the two $50,000 awards going to the student teams that get closest to an altitude of 45,000 feet, with any liquid fueled rocket (for $50,000) and with a methane/oxygen liquid… READ MORE >

Kickstarter Features MarsVR Program as “Project We Love”

The Mars Society is pleased to report some very exciting news! Our organization’s IT Director James Burk was informed today by Kickstarter that our new MarsVR program has been selected as a “Project We Love.” Kickstarter is now featuring our MarsVR campaign prominently on their platform. You can now see the “Project We Love” badge on our Kickstarter page, and we are one of the top featured projects in their Technology/Space Exploration category, which you can access using this link…. READ MORE >

4th Planet Logistics Director to Discuss Mars-Moon Lava Tube Habitats at Mars Society Convention

The Mars Society is pleased to announce that Michael Chalmer Dunn, Director of 4th Planet Logistics, will discuss plans to design and build human habitat infrastructures in lava tubes on Mars and the Moon during the 21st Annual International Mars Society Convention, scheduled for August 23-26, 2018 at the Pasadena Convention Center. Mr. Dunn’s company, 4th Planet Logistics, was founded in 2016 with the goal of evaluating and testing the practicality of pressurizing terrestrial lava tubes directly by creating atmospheric… READ MORE >

Jump the Line & Become a MDRS Crew Member

For the first time ever, the Mars Society is offering a very unique opportunity to the general public – to serve as an actual crew member during a simulation at its Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) in southern Utah. Crew members are typically recruited by the Mars Society from a large pool of interested researchers, educators and students, requiring all potential candidates to go through a standardized process similar to a college or job application. The Mars Society is currently raising… READ MORE >

Red Planet Radio Interviews IT Director James Burk on New MarsVR Kickstarter Campaign

In today’s Red Planet Radio podcast (episode 20), we speak with James Burk, the Mars Society’s IT Director and lead manager of the organization’s newest project, MarsVR. In this interview, we discuss the Mars Society’s new MarsVR project, how it differs from the other VR and AR projects out there, photo-grammetry mapping of our Mars Desert Research Station for photo-realistic VR experiences and the organization’s new Kickstarter campaign. For more details about the MarsVR Kickstarter campaign, please visit: www.MarsVR.io…. READ MORE >

Mars Society Launches Kickstarter to Create MarsVR Crew Training Program

The Mars Society, the world’s largest space advocacy group dedicated to the human exploration and settlement of the planet Mars, launched today a Kickstarter campaign to help raise $27,500 for a new open-source virtual reality platform called MarsVR, which will be used for serious research to support the goal of sending humans to the Red Planet. The MarsVR program will be a unique multi-phase effort designed to pioneer the emerging field of CrowdExploration, which we define as the partnership between the… READ MORE >

Bridenstine Confirmation : Message from Robert Zubrin

A Message from Mars Society President Dr. Robert Zubrin Congratulations Jim Bridenstine for your Senate confirmation as NASA Administrator. The Mars Society offers you its full support in any effort you make to give the American people a purpose-driven space program that is really going somewhere. May you succeed in once again making NASA the banner of the pioneer spirit. New worlds are at hand, filled with wonders waiting to be discovered and history waiting to be made. The chains… READ MORE >

Mars InSight Project Manager Tom Hoffman to Address Mars Society Convention

The Mars Society is pleased to announce that Tom Hoffman, Project Manager of the upcoming Mars InSight lander mission, will address the 21st Annual International Mars Society Convention, scheduled for August 23-26, 2018 at the Pasadena Convention Center (Pasadena, CA). With a launch window opening on May 5th and a scheduled landing on the Red Planet in late November, Mars InSight will examine the deep interior of Mars with the goal of helping us understand how terrestrial planets – including… READ MORE >

2018 Mars Society Poster Contest Extended for 5 Days

PLEASE NOTE: Due to a number of recent requests from designers, the deadline for the 2018 Mars Society Poster Contest has been extended until Wednesday, April 18th, 5:00 pm MST. The design competition was originally scheduled to end on April 13th. The 2018 Mars Society Poster Contest kicked off recently. Members and friends alike are invited to submit a poster for consideration, with the winning design to be used as the main promotional graphic for the 21st Annual International Mars… READ MORE >

Mars Society Australia Preps for 2nd Balloon Payload Flight [4.8.18]

Mars Society Australia (MSA) announced that its second near-space payload is ready for flight. Set to be lofted into the atmosphere on board a high-altitude weather balloon (courtesy of Robert Brand) later this month, the MSA science package was built by Trent McDougall & Steven Hobbs and consists of a variety of research instruments, including a fish-eye camera, a spectrometer, a visible camera, a near-IR camera and pressure and temperature sensors.   This effort is part of the Marsobot Project,… READ MORE >

RPP Blog (#37) Building Mars: Modeling Permanent Structures Using Mars-Sourced Materials [4.7.18]

By: Lorena Bueno, Guest Blogger Red Planet Pen (RPP) Blog, Issue #37 Crack open any mid-level science novel from the last 70 years and you’ll find, among fanciful descriptions of grand canals and sand-scattering weather systems, varied descriptions of what’s underfoot (or boot): Martian sand. Regolith, powder, basalt rock, even clay, hint at a time when Mars had enough water and geologic activity to create clay. As we plan our first trips to Mars on Earth with the Mars Desert… READ MORE >

Utah Mars Society Chapter Planning Inaugural Meeting (April 14) in SLC

The Mars Society is a membership-driven non-profit organization that advocates Mars exploration and a human mission to the Red Planet. Our organization thrives on promoting our mission through public and political outreach, establishing educational programs, organizing Mars simulations and STEM-related research projects and much more in the hope of growing this dream into a future reality. Utah is already home to one of the Mars Society’s two research stations – The Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) outside Hanksville. Please join… READ MORE >

[R.Zubrin Op-Ed] Moon Direct: How to Build a Moonbase in Four Years [3.30.18]

By Robert Zubrin SpaceNews, 03.30.18 The recent amazing success of the Falcon Heavy launch offers America an unprecedented opportunity to break the stagnation that has afflicted its human spaceflight program for decades. In short, the moon is now within reach. Here’s how the mission plan could work. The Falcon Heavy can lift 60 tons to low Earth orbit (LEO). Starting from that point, a hydrogen/oxygen rocket-propelled cargo lander could deliver 12 tons of payload to the lunar surface. We therefore… READ MORE >

36 Student Teams Roll on to URC 2018 Finals [3.28.18]

From a record field of 95 student teams, the University Rover Challenge (URC) has announced the 36 team finalists from 10 countries which have been selected to compete May 31 – June 2 at the Mars Society’s Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) in southern Utah.  [To watch the official video announcement, please click here.] Teams previously passed a Preliminary Design Review milestone, and most recently passed an extremely competitive System Acceptance Review milepost.  Vehicles competing at the URC finals will… READ MORE >

MDRS Crew 190 – Final Mission Report [3.26.18]

The following is the final summary report of Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) Crew 190 (UCL to Mars). A full review of this field season’s activities at MDRS will be presented at the 21st Annual International Mars Society Convention, scheduled for August 23-26, 2018 at the Pasadena Convention Center (Pasadena, California).  Final Mission Report Crew 190 – UCL to Mars March 2018 Maximilien Richald, Crew Commander Michael Saint-Guillian, Executive Officer Ariane Sablon, Crew Biologist Frederic Peyrusson, Crew Biologist Sophie Wuyckens, Crew Physicist & Astronomer Bastien Baix, Crew… READ MORE >

Mars Society SoCal Hi-Desert Chapter to Hold Inaugural Meeting (Apr. 7)

SoCal (Southern California) Hi-Desert Chapter Mars Society Inaugural Meeting – April 7, 2018 Join us for a free, community-interest exploration meeting on Saturday, April 7, 2018 (10:00 am – 12:00 pm) at the Yucca Valley Community Center (Joshua Tree Room), 57090 29 Palms Highway, Yucca Valley, CA (with available parking in the rear). Agenda: 10:00 am Introductions • Dean Arvidson, Professor, Astronomy and Physics • James Melton, PhD, Author, Red Planet Leadership • Kenneth Wright, Professor, Astronomy and Physics 10:15… READ MORE >