NASA could get astronauts to Mars orbit by 2033 and onto the Red Planet's surface by 2039, a new report by a nongovernmental organization suggests. At a news conference yesterday (April 2), representatives of The Planetary Society presented the results of a workshop organized to discuss the feasibility and cost of a crewed mission to orbit the Martian moon Phobos in 2033, leading up to a crewed landing on the Red Planet in 2039. They concluded that such a plan could indeed fit within NASA's human space exploration budget. "We believe we now have an example of a long-term, cost-constrained, executable humans-to-Mars program," Scott Hubbard, a professor in the Stanford University Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics and a member of The Planetary Society's board of directors, said in a statement.
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