Uncharted waters, mountains or far away lands have always drawn explorers. History books show that desire for adventure, even in the face of extreme danger, did not deter the likes of Columbus or Magellan.
So it is perhaps not surprising that Mars One has already received thousands of prospective applicants. But there is no return - unlike the mission which hopes to fly to Mars and back in 2018.
A hostile planet Image captionThe north polar region of Mars, seen from orbit
Scientists believe that Earth and Mars once had similar atmospheres, but they developed very differently
Mars atmosphere is very thin, extremely cold and what water remains is frozen or hidden underground
Theres evidence that Mars was once covered in oceans of water at a time when it had an abundant atmosphere
This very thin atmosphere cant stop heat from the Sun escaping into space
What makes Mars so hostile to life?
Watch how Mars and Earth ended up with such different atmospheres
Future explorers take note. Applicants must be resilient, adaptable, resourceful and must work well within a team. The whole project will be televised, from the reality TV style selection process, to landing and beyond.
On a visit to the BBCs London office, Mars Ones co-founder Bas Lansdorp explains why this would be a one-way flight.
During the seven-to-eight month journey, astronauts will lose bone and muscle mass. After spending time on Mars much weaker gravitational field, it would be almost impossible to readjust back to Earths much stronger gravity, says Landsorp.
Successful applicants will be trained physically and psychologically. The team will use existing technology for all aspects of the project. Energy will be generated from solar panels, water will be recycled and extracted from soil and the astronauts will grow their own food - they will also have an emergency ration and regular top-ups as new explorers join every two years.Mars fascinates scientists because of its similarity to Earth,and it fascinates the public because our myth of Martians is a vision of life beyond Earth.The Mars adventure continues with the launch of a robot vehicle by UK scientists.Its part of project to build an autonomous robotic scientist to explore the Martian surface and is key to the European Space Agencys 2011 ExoMars mission.Journey to mars
[例句]It would be some achievement if a person could make the journey to Marsand back.