- A one-way journey to Mars would significantly cut the cost of human space missions.
- The concept could also give humanity a shot at becoming a multi-planet species.
- The first pioneers would be people past reproductive age, who are better suited to handle the harsh radioactive environment.
Finished having kids? Perhaps it's time to think about moving to Mars.
Scientists Dirk Schulze-Makuch and Paul Davies figure that sending astronauts - particularly ones past their reproductive years - on one-way journeys to Mars is the most economical way to pioneer the space frontier and establish humans as a multi-planet species.
"This is not a suicide mission. The astronauts would go to Mars with the intention of staying for the rest of their lives, as trailblazers of a permanent human Mars colony," Schultz-Makuch, with Washington State University, and Davies, at Arizona State, write in this month's Journal of Cosmology.
"Their role would be to establish a base camp to which more colonists would eventually be sent, and to carry out important scientific and technological projects," the scientists wrote.