Artist Statement

In creating Destination: Mars, my primary inspiration stemmed from the High School Aerospace Scholars program at the Johnson Space Center. Many of the projects we worked on involved researching extended human spaceflight and the requirements for sending humans to Mars. As a final project, I had to work with other students to design a spacecraft to send humans to Mars. Using knowledge from Project Apollo, the International Space Station, and some of the many Mars missions that have been proposed, I came up with a design that includes a crew module for launch and return to Earth, a habitation module to sustain crewmembers on the long journey to Mars, a lander for landing on the surface, and a giant interplanetary propulsion stage utilizing plasma engines for the transit to and from Mars. After the Aerospace Scholars program had ended, I still wanted to visualize our spacecraft design, so on my own time I created a series of CAD models in Autodesk Inventor. After a few weeks of modeling, I rendered some images and edited them together in Adobe Photoshop. Destination: Mars follows the mission profile for a mission to Mars, including liftoff, docking in low Earth orbit, transfer to Mars, entry into Marsí atmosphere, and landing. The textures for the spacecraft, Earth, Mars, the Moon, and the Hubble Deep Field image are all derived from NASA images; however the rest is my own original work. Hopefully someday within our lifetime, similar spacecraft will be sending humans to Mars.