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Astronauts on Mars-bound missions will be stuck in their spacecraft for months on end.

I could find many articles on what psychological issues will have to be faced, how they may/will be faced, how they are currently faced in the ISS, and how the ISS is much different because of proximity, but I could not find information on what important work or activities the astronauts will have on the way.

  • Will the astronauts conduct micro gravity and deep space experiments?
  • Compared to the astronauts on the ISS and similar space stations that have been used, how much of their time will be dedicated?
  • The way back will probably have some specific work relating to the measurements made during the stay. Will there be some significant difference in the workload between the way there and the way back?

I'm assuming the expedition will have the advantage of being outside a magnetosphere, and maybe even have some artificial gravity. Will all experiments be centered on those differing aspects or will they do typical micro gravity/ISS work too?

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First of all, there are no announced plans, so nothing can be said definitively.

Secondly, it really depends on the architecture. A Starship type mission, with lots of extra mass, will almost certainly have that ability. A lower mass one won't have a lot of spare capacity.

My feeling is most of the experiments that will be done will be on the astronauts itself. They will also probably be doing some training, possibly in VR, and otherwise keeping the spacecraft working. But similar to the Apollo astronauts, the journey to Mars will probably be relatively quiet.

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