Six would-be astronauts to live on ‘fake Mars’ in Israeli desert for four weeks

Six astronauts will be spending the next four weeks living on a 'fake version of Mars', which is actually firmly planted on Earth in Israel's Negev Desert.

Scientists hope the tough mission will provide them with information on how humans can cope in unusual and confined conditions – similar to what will be experienced on the Red Planet.

All of the equipment, crew and accommodation is based in Israel but will be managed by 'mission control' situated all the way in Inssbruck, Austria.

The simulation will see five men and one woman spending four weeks living in a 'Mars analog facility', wearing spacesuits and even driving a high-tech space rover, Mail Online reports.

The Austrian Space Forum, who are running the mission, is built up of aerospace engineers and space enthusiasts that want to create technology needed to take humans to Mars.

As well as seeing how humans deal with the conditions of the desert, the crew will also reportedly be simulating an array of human-robotic Mars surface activities.

The analog missions help to understand the "advantages and limitations of future Human planetary missions," the Austrian Space Forum said in a statement.

The crew's isolation phase began today (12 October) and they will only be able to chat to mission control until their release on October 31.

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This is reportedly a mindfulness behavioural science technique that will get the crew used to cope in confined and lonely environments.

Analog missions aim to mirror the real-world experience of future Mars astronauts.

This is why the crew will be sent out in spacesuits, getting them used to the equipment needed to protect them from the harsh environment of the Red Planet.

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Conditions on Mars include freezing temperatures, lack of breathable atmosphere and heaps of solar radiation.

The crew will complete over twenty experiments wearing the Austrian Space Forum's Mars suit prototypes, in the fields of biology, medicine, geology and engineering.

This includes driving futuristic rovers and other vehicles that might make it to Mars when humans eventually visit, which experts believe could be sometime in the 2030s.

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