Russia to send monkey to Mars

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Moscow, Dec 22(ANI): Russian scientists have revealed that a monkey may be sent to Mars.

According to reports, Russia's Cosmonautics Academy is in preliminary talks with the Institute of Experimental Pathology and Therapy in Georgia, which supplied apes for a similar programme in the 1980s.

It would also arrange for a simulated space flight to Mars that would lay the foundation for a future mission, as a round-trip journey to Mars is estimated to take about 520 days, so a Mars-bound space ape would have to withstand confinement for very lengthy periods of time.

"Earlier this programme was aimed at sending cosmonauts, people (to Mars). But, given the length of the flight to Mars, and given the cosmic rays for which we don't have adequate protection over such a long trip, discussions have focused recently on sending an ape instead of a person," The Telegraph quoted Zurab Mikvabia, Director of the Institute of Experimental Pathology and Therapy, as saying.

Scientists are also considering sending a robot along on the mission to feed and clean up after the ape.

"The robot will feed the monkey, will clean up after it. Our task will be to teach the monkey to co-operate with the robot," Mikvabia said. (ANI)

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