NASA's plan will take more than 15 years and requires many people, from astronauts on the International Space Station who are testing the limits of living in space, to the engineers working on the Space Launch System.
The space agency has begun highlighting some of the individuals making the mission possible, including Carly Watts, a technology development engineer who is working on NASA's next-generation space suits. The Spacesuit Portable Life Support System is essential for any astronaut, but current suits are bulky and technology has progressed significantly in the last few decades to make suits that are safer and easier to maneuver:
Another NASA engineer helping pave the way to Mars is Jennifer Pruitt, the lead sustaining engineer for the urine processor aboard the ISS. While the title doesn't sound glamorous, Pruitt and the urine processor provide astronauts with air and water, two things essential for any astronaut traveling to Mars: