marsglobe3The Space Symposium has added a last-minute panel that will be sure to draw attention: the team that put together the Inspiration Mars proposal to send two people around the Red Planet.

Heading up the panel are: Dennis Tito, chairman of the Inspiration Mars Foundation, Taber MacCallum, chief technology officer for the foundation and CEO of Paragon Space Development Corp.; Jane Ponynter, president of Paragon; and Jonathan Clark, chief medical offier for the foundation and associate professor of neurology and space medicine at Baylor College.

The Inspiration Mars Foundation, an organization founded by private space traveler Dennis Tito, has announced plans for the first human mission to Mars in 2018. The Space Foundation has cited the plan as a powerful new platform that aligns with the Space Foundation’s mission to advance space related endeavors to inspire enable and propel humanity.

Inspiration Mars will take advantage of the simultaneous occurrence of the lowest predicted solar radiation exposure and the closest alignment of Earth and Mars to send a two-person American crew – a man and a woman – on a historic journey to fly within 100 miles of Mars and return safely to Earth. The target launch date is January 5, 2018.

Tito’s nonprofit Inspiration Mars Foundation cites that its primary goal is to “to provide a platform for unprecedented science, engineering and education opportunities.” Learn more by visiting

The Space Symposium will be held April 8-11 at The Broadmoor Hotel and includes education programs and special presentations for young space professionals under the age of 35, part of the Space Foundation’s New Generation Initiative.

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