Calling all supertaster space nerds: NASA wants your help to improve the bland food astronauts would have to eat while on a mission to Mars.
The space agency is looking for applicants to eat astronaut food for four months during a simulated trip to the Red Planet. Participants will try instant foods, and ones with shelf-stable ingredients, and scientists will record their reactions. The goal of the experiment is to discover what foods people like to consume consistently.
Cornell University and University of Hawaii-Manoa researchers want six people to eat space food and wear spacesuits on a lava flow in Hawaii for 120 days. Although, participants won't actually go to space, the participants will act as if they are on Mars. The researchers will record the participants' reactions to typical NASA foodstuffs, such as flour, sugar and dried meat.
Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree in engineering, biological or physical sciences, mathematics, or computer science, and they need to have professional experience. Don't apply if you're a smoker or don't speak English. Selected participants will go through a two-week training mission and will be paid $5,000 upon successful completion of the mission.
Round-trip travel, space food and lodging will be paid for. The application is open until Feb. 29.
Who wants to apply for this project and fulfill (at least part of) their childhood dream to be an astronaut? What food would you want to take on a Martian mission? Tell us in the comments below.
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