Mars on Earth: All About Life in a Martian Habitat

Learn about what life in a Martian habitat on Earth is like from astrobiologist Michaela Musilova and photographer Cassandra Klos



If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to spend two weeks on Mars, you can start by visiting Hawaii. In the middle of the Big Island, there’s a facility designed to simulate a Martian habitat. You’ll spend your days doing experiments with five other crew members—figuring out new ways to grow microgreens or looking for tiny organisms in volcanic rocks. When you want to go outside, you’ll get special permission from the flight director back on “Earth” and put on a spacesuit. The whole time, everyone will talk and act as though you’re actually on Martian soil.

Astrobiologist Michaela Musilova has led more than 30 such missions as the director of HI-SEAS, the Mars and lunar simulation site at the top of Hawaii’s Mauna Loa volcano. Fine art photographer Cassandra Klos has been taking part in Mars and lunar simulations, and documenting them, since 2015. Together, they’ll take us on a journey into this fascinating world where cutting-edge science meets space-travel role-play. They’ll also tell us how preparing for life on the red planet can help us solve problems here on Earth.

Join our speakers for an exclusive online lecture on Tuesday, December 7th, at 7 p.m. ET. Following the presentation, senior Smithsonian magazine editor Jennie Rothenberg Gritz will moderate a Q&A where you can pose your own questions.

A recording of this presentation will be available to ticketholders via email after the event and will be accessible for on-demand viewing for one week.

The event is finished.


Dec 07 2021


7:00 pm - 8:15 pm

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