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Volunteers Wanted for Expedition to Reactivate Flashline Mars Arctic Research Station

The Mars Society is calling for volunteers for a mission to reactivate its Flashline Mars Arctic Research Station (FMARS). The FMARS is located on Devon Island in the Canadian Arctic 900 miles from the North Pole in one of the most Mars-like environments on Earth. Since the early 2000’s, Mars mission simulations there have unmatched value in helping humans prepare to explore the Red Planet.

The last mission to FMARS took place in the summer of 2017. The Mars Society is looking to reactivate the facility. To do so, a crew will need to go to the Arctic from late June through early August 2023. The team will spend the first half of this period working to repair and upgrade the station. It will then spend the second half of the visit exercising the station with a Mars mission simulation during which it will attempt to conduct a program of sustained geological and microbiological exploration while operating under Mars mission constraints.

The Mars Society is looking for a team of six dedicated people to take on this challenge. Conditions will be primitive and may require tenting until the station’s habitability is restored. There may also be some hazard from polar bears. Volunteers will need to be physically fit and prepared to do hard work.

The cost of the mission will be considerable therefore the crew will need to help support it by arranging sponsorship. Crew members may volunteer as individuals or come forward as a team, with $20,000 sponsorship expected for individuals or $120,000 for a full team. Sponsorships can include funding from academic, corporate, foundation, private, governmental, or media sources.

Crew members are required to bring their own outdoor gear, but the Mars Society will supply all supplies, mission equipment, training, firearms, transportation to the Arctic and transportation and housing while on site.

Individuals with outdoor experience, scientific backgrounds, skill with tools, or ability to work as part of a team are especially encouraged to apply for the mission. Passion for achieving the goal of human Mars exploration is a must.

If you wish to be considered as a volunteer participant in the expedition, please send your resume and a cover letter to [email protected]

Naming rights or other forms of sponsorship for both the expedition and the FMARS station are available. Companies or individuals interested in becoming sponsors should contact James Burk, Mars Society Executive Director, at [email protected]

[Images: Nadav Neuhaus]