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Architecture student samples life on Mars

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A trainee architect is one of six Nasa recruits who have just begun the longest isolation experience ever attempted, in an attempt to simulate what life would be like on Mars.

Tristan Bassingthwaighte, a doctor of architecture candidate at the University of Hawaii Manoa, is living in an 11m-diameter dome in Hawaii for an entire year. He is joined by three other Americans – a pilot, a journalist and a soil scientist – plus a French astrobiologist and a German physicist.

The six, who retreated from the outside world a fortnight ago, will live on rations such as powdered cheese and tinned tuna, and will only be able to venture outside wearing a spacesuit.

Bassingthwaighte does seem to have the right credentials. According to his LinkedIn page, his doctorate thesis involves designing a next generation conceptual Mars habitat.


 

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