One of the most ambitious projects that could take place in the 21st century is a manned mission to Mars. But how does someone go about preparing for a trip like that? With lots of practice.
One example is the MARS-500 experiment, a joint mission between Russia, China, and the European Space Agency that ended in 2011. Six volunteers were locked in isolation for 520 days to simulate a complete round-trip mission to Mars and to study the pyschological effects of such a trip. They “landed” and returned safely.