Teenager Alyssa Carson Might Be the First Person on Mars
While the entire space industry is looking for ways to colonize Mars, the big question is about who shall be the first human to set foot on our neighbouring planet. Ahead of NASA’s planned 2033 manned mission to Mars, it appears as though the organization may have found the perfect candidate, Alyssa Carson, a teenager from Louisiana, US might be the first person to ever walk the surface of the Red Planet.
At only 7-years-old, Carson attended her first space camp in Huntsville, Alabama, of which she only speaks fondly of, stating, “that was the weekend of my life. I got to learn everything I had been wanting to know and more… I got to see a life-size rocket.” At the age of 9, the young science lover met NASA astronaut Sandra Magnus. In this meeting, she told Carson that she was, in fact, her age when she decided to go to space.
The probability of that happening is further propelled by the fact that the 17-year-old is already training to become an astronaut and has completed NASA Passport Program, having visited all the NASA Visitor Centres across the US and subsequently becoming the first person to attend all three NASA camps in Alabama, Canada, and Turkey. Although Alyssa Carson cannot apply for NASA’s astronaut training program until she turns 18.
In her interview with TeenVogue, Alyssa stated how she was always obsessed with Mars explorations: “I started watching videos of rovers landing on Mars. I had a gigantic map of Mars in my room I would look at. We started getting telescopes so we could look at space,” she said.
In 2033, she will be the mission’s perfect candidate, at 32-years-old and with technology fully equipped to handle the voyage, Carson would be far better trained and have a much longer time involved in the first Mars landing than virtually anybody else.
To date, Alyssa has undergone training for microgravity and oxygen deprivation. She is learning three extra languages in addition: French, Chinese and Spanish. She is also the youngest person to graduate from Advanced Possum Academy, technically making her certified to go into space.
The obstacles range anywhere from lethal solar radiation to extremely low atmospheric pressure on the surface of the Red Planet. The technology needed to survive most of these hardships is yet to be developed and only time will tell how soon the space agency is ready to send this ambitious teenager to Mars, if ever.