Pakistani chosen to train for one-way Mars mission

Published February 18, 2015
Reginald Foulds. — Photo courtesy: Facebook
Reginald Foulds. — Photo courtesy: Facebook

A Pakistani man is among the hundred candidates — from 200,000 hopefuls — who have been chosen to train for a one-way trip to Mars, his profile on the Community Mars One website said.

Sixty-year old Reginald Foulds, one of the final contenders for the ambitious mission, served as a helicopter pilot in the Pakistani air force before retiring in 1992. Foulds moved to Canada with his wife at the age of 42, according to a report published in the Business Insider.

"With my 22 years of military background as an infantry officer and a helicopter pilot, I am capable of surviving in any conditions. I have been trained to stand against any odds and in any conditions. I have learnt to be adaptable, determined, curious and courageous; I am very focused in what I get out to do. I am a very reliable and a trustworthy person," says his profile.

It adds: "I have the curiosity to explore having no fears whatsoever; to me death only comes once. I have a will to go beyond the skies to seek and discover. To me there is no such word as impossible or I can’t. I, like the Mars-One team, have a vision to leave a legacy for this world to remember for thousands of years to come. I am determined to do something literally out of this world and be one of the first human[s] for the dawn of a new era – human life on Mars."

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Eventually, the 100 candidates will be whittled down to 24 to make up groups of four which Mars One, a Dutch not-for-profit company, is going to send on a one-way journey to the Red Planet, which lies a minimum 55 million kilometres — six months’ travel — from Earth.

The group behind the endeavour hopes to use existing technology to fulfill the mission. However, the Red Planet has always been a complicated place for exploration with only half of the unmanned missions ever succeeding.

The mission is expected to take approximately seven months and a recent MIT study found that even if the space junkies succeeded in landing, they would only survive for 68 days using current technology.

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