THE MARS SOCIETY OF CALTECH:
HUMAN EXPLORATION OF MARS ENDEAVOR
Christopher Hirata, Nathan Brown, Derek Shannon
Jim Burke, Bruce Murray, Mark Adler
The Mars Society of Caltech Human Exploration of Mars Endeavor (Mars SCHEME) is a detailed description of robotic and human missions necessary to establish a permanent human presence on the surface of Mars. The sequence begins in 2009 with a robotic Mars sample return mission on a larger scale than that currently planned. This is followed in 2011 by a pair of HEDS landers designed to test in-situ propellant production and other necessary technologies. Cargo for the human crews is sent in 2016 and in 2018, with the first five-member crew traveling to Mars during the 2020 opportunity. The Mars SCHEME features design redundancy; for example, the capsules for Earth ascent, Mars ascent, and Earth arrival are based upon a common design. Systems redundancy is also included to provide multiple habitats on Mars and in interplanetary space. The plan uses only chemical propulsion, starting with the Z-5 launch vehicle that can deliver up to 112,000 kg to low Earth orbit. Costs of human missions are comparable with those of the NASA Design Reference Mission 3.0. Human missions have low recurring costs, high reliability, and high scientific return. Extensive computer simulations were used to develop launch vehicles and trajectories. Further details are available at http://mars.caltech.edu/.