OTTAWA: Astronauts traveling through space on the long trip to Mars will not have the usual backup from mission control on Earth and will need to think of themselves as Martians to survive, Canada’s most famous spaceman half-jokingly said Friday, reports AFP.
Current predictions are that humans will reach Mars—up to 400 million kilometers (250 million miles) from Earth—in the coming decades.But the vast distance means communications with mission control would be delayed by up to 22 minutes.
As a result, astronauts would need to be self-reliant on the voyage, which clocks in at 2.5 years round trip in travel time alone.
“If I were commander of that crew as soon as the Earth started fading in the rearview mirror, I would get the crew together and say: ‘We are no longer Earthlings, we are now Martians. That’s who we are. We need to redefine our relationship with the planet that birthed us,’” former astronaut Chris Hadfield said.