CNESMAG n°69: Mars, The New Frontier

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The current revolution in the space sector, driven by innovation for applications, could have the unexpected effect of stepping up the space of Mars exploration. Slated for 2010-2050 only six months ago, launch of the first crewed mission to Mars is seemingly getting closer by the day, with proponents now talking about 2030 or even 2025. Why ? Because we are starting to see the benefits of the spectacular cost reductions in satellites and space launches made possible by a series of projects and increased launch an production rates. As a result, what was previously just a concept to send spacecraft to Mars capable of supporting a four-to-six person crew in space for two years is now on the verge of becoming reality.

Drawing on the in-depth knowledge of Mars gleaned from the exceptional Mars Express, Curiosity, MAVEN, ExoMars, Insight and Mars 2020 missions, France, CNES and our scientific community will be at the forefront of this new saga of the modern age – to conquer what is fast becoming THE new frontier for all humankind.