Has anyone outside of the Mars One foundation done an independent evaluation that concept in terms of the following heads?
- Initial Cost
- Ongoing Cost
- Technical feasibility?
Yes, this was released in mid-October 2014 by a group of Ph.D. candidates at MIT: http://web.mit.edu/sydneydo/Public/Mars%20One%20Feasibility%20Analysis%20IAC14.pdf
And they will be interviewed and available for listeners' questions today November 25th at thespaceshow.com
Listen live 10-11:30 PM EST
Generally speaking, the report is quite pessimistic, including items like not believing the station could survive longer than 68 days on Mars, lack of budgeting, timeline, etc.
Directly from the Mars One site - Finance and Feasibility, Mission Cost:
After discussions with potential suppliers for each component and close examination, Mars One estimates the cost of putting the first four people on Mars at six billion US Dollar. The six billion figure is the cost of all the hardware combined, plus the operational expenditures, plus margins. For every next manned mission, Mars One estimates the costs at four billion US$
That is excluding the cost of maintaining 4 astronauts on Mars until they die.
However, some have criticized the budget as being too low, instead suggesting it to be at the 100 billion Dollar mark. A manned mission to Mars was proposed by NASA in 2009 (which would return to Earth) which had a projected cost of $100 billion.
Having a look at some other proposed missions, such as Mars Direct, I would estimate that the cost to send 4 astronauts to Mars, without a return trip, would cost somewhere between 4 to 10 billion Dollars. Including the cost to maintain the mission.