American Company Lockheed Martin and British Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd. got the contract for development of Mars landing probe and orbital device that will be the first unmanned mission in the framework of Mars one project that assumes creating human colony on Mars by 2023.
The first launch is planned for 2018. Lander and satellite designed to relay radio signal to the Earth will be launched to Mars. A range of technological solutions for next stages of the project and future colony will be also checked in the framework of the first mission.
Mars One concluded a contract for developing mission concept. It was planned that Lockheed will design the lander while SSTL – the orbiter. The lander will be designed on the basis of “Phoenix” probe that successfully landed on Mars in 2008 and took the first water samples.
New device is also able to take soil samples with the help of manipulator and to study the opportunities of drawing the water from the soil.
Mars One project basing in the Netherlands does not receive any financial means from the state and negotiates with potential partners and sponsors for possible financing. Besides project promoters started crowdsourcing campaign on Indiegogo website.
Image credit – Mars One