LONDON (CBS Tampa) – The dream of going to Mars is still alive for 705 people who joined the Mars One project.
The Netherlands-based non-profit organization wants to establish a human settlement on the Red Planet, so it invited 1,058 people out of more than 200,000 applicants to begin training.
The 353 people who didn’t make it were eliminated for personal or medical reasons, Mars One representatives said.
“We’re incredibly excited to start the next phase of Round 2, where we begin to better understand our candidates who aspire to take such a daring trip,” Mars One chief medical officer Norbert Kraft said in a statement. “They will have to show their knowledge, intelligence, adaptability and personality.”
The 418 men and 287 women who made the cut come from all over the world, with 313 hailing from the Americas, 187 from Europe, 136 from Asia, 41 from Africa and 28 from Oceania.
That number will get even further reduced as the remaining candidates are subject to more interviews and training.
Eventually only a handful of potential settlers will remain and begin training full-time for their possible Mars mission.
“Whole teams and individuals might be selected out during training when they prove not to be suitable for the mission,” Mars One wrote in the press release. “Mars One will repeat the selection process regularly to train additional teams to replace eliminated teams and crews of settlers that have successfully left Earth to live on Mars.
The project plans to launch unmanned missions starting in 2018 and then begin sending two person teams to the Red Planet beginning in 2024…then send additional teams every two years afterwards.
There are currently no plans to bring any colonist back to Earth.
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