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Hot Topic Exploration Moon to Mars
Suiting Up in Space
Topic: Moon to Mars
Summary: Scientists are designing new spacesuits that will provide increased mobility for human explorers on the Moon and Mars. The less bulky suits will allow humans to travel more easily and perform intricate scientific experiments on the surface of these distant worlds.

Working on the Moon
Topic: Moon to Mars
Summary: In the not-too-distant future, NASA is planning to build lunar research outposts where astronauts will perform important scientific experiments on the Moon. However, such missions may have implications for the mental health of employees working in isolation for extended periods.

Volunteer for Mars
Topic: Moon to Mars
Summary: The European Space Agency is seeking candidates for a simulated Mars mission in 2008/2009. Candidates will undergo a selection process similar to ESA astronauts, and those chosen will spend 520 isolated days in a special facility in Moscow.

From the Moon to Earth
Topic: Moon to Mars
Summary: Research has shown that surface temperatures on the near side of the Moon may provide an accurate record of information concerning the Earth's climate. Consequently, monitoring stations on the Moon could one day help us study our own planet.

Restricted Zone
Topic: Moon to Mars
Summary: International regulations say it´s okay for astronauts to make a mess on the moon. But the rules for sending humans to Mars, according to Dr. Cassie Conley, NASA´s acting planetary protection officer, are far more restrictive.

Containing ET
Topic: Moon to Mars
Summary: Despite stringent restrictions, international regulations do allow for living terrestrial organisms to be sent to Mars – and for martian rocks that may contain life to be returned to Earth. In this exclusive Astrobiology Magazine interview, NASA´s acting planetary protection officer, Dr. Cassie Conley, explains how it could be done.

Keeping It Clean
Topic: Moon to Mars
Summary: The job of a planetary protection officer is to make sure that humans don´t contaminate other worlds, and that Earth is kept safe from the potential harmful effects of extraterrestrial life. For NASA, that job is currently held by Dr. Cassie Conley. Astrobiology Magazine recently interviewed Conley to find out what she actually does.

Designing OPRA Glasses
Topic: Moon to Mars
Summary: University of Arkansas researchers will develop a probe for future planetary rovers that will help scientists study the history of the solar system by examining the properties of layers of material beneath the surface of the moon, Mars, comets and other planetary bodies.

Exploring Caves From 30 Feet in the Air
Topic: Moon to Mars
Summary: Underground caves could prove ideal as places for future human explorers to live on Mars. But first, someone has to find them. Jut Wynne is trying to figure out how.

Deflector Shields Up!
Topic: Moon to Mars
Summary: A team of scientists are preparing to construct an experimental magnetic shield that could be used to protect astronauts from radiation during long-duration space missions and possibly while on the surface of the Moon and Mars.

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