How the Private Mars One Lander Will Explore the Red Planet (Infographic)

Infographic: Details of Mars One's unmanned lander.
Prior to their attempt to found a human colony on Mars, the Mars One group plans an unmanned scouting expedition. (Image credit: by Karl Tate, Infographics Artist)

As a precursor to their planned one-way manned mission, Mars One organizers have decided to send an automated lander and communications satellite pair to the Red Planet in 2018. The Mars One lander carries an experiment to extract water from the Martian soil as well as equipment designed to demonstrate technology that will be needed for the manned Mars One settlement to follow.

An SSTL communications satellite in Mars-synchronous orbit will relay high-bandwidth data and a live video feed to Earth.

The design of the Mars One lander is based on NASA’s Phoenix lander, which descended onto the north polar region of Mars in 2008. [Photos: How Mars One Wants to Colonize the Red Planet]

The Mars One lander carries two large main solar power panels, an experimental thin-film solar panel, a robotic soil sampler arm, and a 3D stereo camera on a tall mast to provide images taken from the height of a human standing on Mars. 

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Karl Tate contributor

Karl's association with goes back to 2000, when he was hired to produce interactive Flash graphics. From 2010 to 2016, Karl worked as an infographics specialist across all editorial properties of Purch (formerly known as TechMediaNetwork).  Before joining, Karl spent 11 years at the New York headquarters of The Associated Press, creating news graphics for use around the world in newspapers and on the web.  He has a degree in graphic design from Louisiana State University and now works as a freelance graphic designer in New York City.