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First to red planet will become Martians: Canada astronaut

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. 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…

NASA blasts off Mars lander on a sixth-month journey to probe quakes on Red Planet

Vandenberg Air Force Base, US: NASA on Saturday blasted off its latest Mars lander, InSight, designed to perch on the surface and listen for "Marsquakes" ahead of eventual human missions to explore the Red Planet. "Three, two, one, liftoff!" said a NASA commentator as the spacecraft launched on a dark, foggy morning atop an Atlas V rocket at 4:05 am Pacific time (1105 GMT) from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, marking NASA's first interplanetary launch from the US west coast. The $993 million project aims to…

NASA’s newest Mars lander to study earthquakes on Red Planet

TAMPA: NASA is poised to launch its first lander to Mars since 2012, an unmanned spacecraft called InSight that aims to listen for quakes and unravel the mystery of how rocky planets like Earth form. It is scheduled to launch on Saturday at 7:05 am Eastern time (1105 GMT) from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, and if all goes as planned, it should land on the Red Planet November 26. Since the Earth and Mars likely formed by similar processes 4.5 billion years ago, the US space agency hopes the lander --…

UFO hunters spot ‘tree’ on Mars in NASA Curiosity Rover footage

Mars is a dry, cold deserted wasteland with a thin atmosphere where liquid water is unable to exist on the surface, but some UFO hunters have claimed to have found evidence that it may have once been lush with green vegetation.   Eagle-eyed conspiracy theorists claimed to have found a tree stump on Mars, which they believe indicates there was once life on the red planet - 'the petrified remnants of a Martian tree'. The 3ft-high stump-like image was apparently spotted in footage taken by the Mars Curiosity Rover, which…

UAE announces to build first city on Mars

DUBAI: The United Arab Emirates has unveiled an ambitious new project that aims to establish the first inhabitable human settlement on Mars by 2117. The initiative called "Mars 2117 Project" was announced on Tuesday by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the ruler of Dubai and vice president of the UAE, on the sidelines of the 5th World Government Summit. The project integrates a vision to create a mini-city and community on Mars to be developed and executed in partnership with major international scientific…

Swiss firm acquires Mars One private project

THE HAGUE: A British-Dutch project aiming to send an unmanned mission to Mars by 2018 has announced that the shareholders of a Swiss financial services company have agreed a takeover bid. "The acquisition is now only pending approval by the board of Mars One Ventures," the company said in a joint statement with InFin Innovative Finance AG, adding approval from the Mars board would come "as soon as possible." "The takeover provides a solid path to funding the next steps of Mars One's mission to establish a permanent…