Ukrainian Engineer Selected As Candidate for One-Way Mars Mission

NASA's Hubble Space Telescope took the picture of Mars on June 26, 2001, when Mars was approximately 68 million kilometers (43 million miles) from Earth — the closest Mars has ever been to Earth since 1988. Hubble can see details as small as 16 kilometers (10 miles) across.

A 26-year-old Ukrainian engineer has been selected as one of the final 100 candidates for a reality television-funded mission to Mars sometime in the unspecified future, according to Mars One, the organization behind the project.

Mars One was founded in 2010 by Dutch entrepreneur Bas Lansdorp to select 24 volunteers for a one-way mission to colonize the Red Planet.

The mission will be funded by advertising revenue from a high-stakes reality television show following the colonists exploits as they make a home on Mars.

Set to launch aboard a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket in 2024, the project drew 165,000 applicants, and on Monday, Mars One named its final 100 candidates.

Among the candidates included in the final 100 is a Ukrainian engineer introduced only as Sergei. According to Mars One, Sergei worked at a Ukrainian research institute, and is 26 years old.

The project's director, Norbert Kraft, said that the final 100 included 50 men and 50 women. Only 24 will be selected for the actual flight, and now the task will be to measure their ability to work as a team.

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