Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login
MARS-500 (wikipedia.org)
49 points by sethbannon on Aug 29, 2015 | hide | past | favorite | 14 comments

"Marina Tugusheva, the only woman of the crew, was excluded from the longer missions, to prevent sexual tension from jeopardising the mission."

Thats from the year 2009 folks! Depressing :(

She put it best

"Anyone who's ready to participate in space exploration should treat it as serious work. Quite consciously we must treat others as not men and women but as colleagues" [1]

[1] http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1165837/Women...

And as we have seen in catholic monasteries, suppressing sexual desire works really well. Oh wait...

I'm not saying its a valid reason to exclude women, but denying that the issue exists is not the best comeback to that argument.

I don't think the argument is particularly valid for a highly professional mission. After all, sexual tension is also known to happen between men...

I'm not sure if professionalism fixes behavior enough for that to cause the argument to be invalid. There are plenty of examples of people in highly professional roles having challenges.

Religion is also very professional. It's far from trivial to become a priest and they have a quite extensive ethics policy.

Sure, sexual tension happens between men, but much less so - and they wouldn't be all fighting over a single resource.

We just need the next mission to be all female.

> Sure, sexual tension happens between men, but much less so

I'm pretty sure this isn't true.

The argument which I think is particularly invalid is not that sexual tension may exist -- it'd be ridiculous to negate it will probably exist -- but that women must be excluded in order to eliminate it.

Also, exactly which dangers to the mission do they foresee due to "sexual tension"? Unwanted competition? But said competition between men can arise from almost anything! Unwanted competition for a single resource? (Forget for a moment the inherent sexism of considering women a "resource") Easy fix: make half the team women, the other half men.

I am assuming they screen team members for psychological stability, professionalism and teamwork, right?

>Easy fix: make half the team women, the other half men.

not easy fix. because sexual competition knows no bounds. If I want my genes to have the best chances of seeding mars, I best get more than 1 mate. Therefore so long as there is a chance of procreating there will be tensions/competition.

IMO the "easy" fix is to remove the possibility of sexual competition via castration of the whole crew. Easy, but no one would want to do it.

I thought there were solutions, but looking at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anaphrodisiac all I'm seeing is serious health risks due to side-effects.

Nuns suppress sexual desire and I haven't heard of any fallout from that. Maybe it exists and it's just not well publicized?

Years of physical, sexual, and emotional abuse of children perpetrated by nuns in Ireland don't make you think there's maybe something about some manifestations of nunnery that are harmful?

(Although I agree that this is a bullshit reason used to exclude women from anything. See also the Mecury 13 - a bunch of women who did the same astronaut tests as men, often outperforming those men, who were denied astronaut status because that could only go to military test pilots, and they could only be recruited from military fighter pilots, and they could only be men. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercury_13 http://history.nasa.gov/printFriendly/flats.html )

Orphanages and prisons have along history of abuse, regardless of the private sexual behavior of the staff.

There's at least one documented case of monks and nuns digging tunnels between their respective facilities.


I suppose this is on the front page because NASA just began a similar experiment.


The closest experiment to Mars is the space station right? How long do people stay up there?

The typical stay on the ISS is about six months, however there is currently an ongoing mission for astronauts Scott Kelly and Mikhail Korniyenko to stay on station for a total of 342 days.

This still does not exceed the 437 day stay by Valeri Vladimirovich Polyakov (on the Russian space station Mir)

Guidelines | FAQ | Lists | API | Security | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact