Take a Look Inside a House Meant for Mars

The solar-powered home has six bedrooms, a composting toilet, Wi-Fi with a 20-minute delay, and some seriously strict house rules.

For most people, spending a year with five strangers in a small dome two-thirds of the way up a Hawaiian volcano wouldn’t be especially appealing. But for the six crew members of the Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation (HI-SEAS) project, the mock Mars habitat wasn’t that bad.

On August 28, the HI-SEAS team exited the dome on Mauna Loa for the first time in a year. Here, they lived, worked, suffered, and problem-solved together, emerging from their voluntary isolation ready to rejoin the planet they’d left behind, in theory if not in practice.

Inside the 1,200-square-foot habitat, they dealt with a 20-minute communications delay, limited water supplies, and a few strict house rules. But as we saw on a

DON'T MISS THE REST OF THIS STORY!
Create a free account to continue and get unlimited access to hundreds of Nat Geo articles, plus newsletters.

Create your free account to continue reading

No credit card required. Unlimited access to free content.
Or get a Premium Subscription to access the best of Nat Geo - just $19
SUBSCRIBE

Read This Next

Is banning fishing bad for fishermen? Not in this marine reserve
SeaWorld allegedly violated the Animal Welfare Act. Why is it still open?
'World’s worst shipwreck' was bloodier than we thought

Go Further

Subscriber Exclusive Content

Why are people so dang obsessed with Mars?

How viruses shape our world

The era of greyhound racing in the U.S. is coming to an end

See how people have imagined life on Mars through history

See how NASA’s new Mars rover will explore the red planet

Why are people so dang obsessed with Mars?

How viruses shape our world

The era of greyhound racing in the U.S. is coming to an end

See how people have imagined life on Mars through history

See how NASA’s new Mars rover will explore the red planet

Why are people so dang obsessed with Mars?

How viruses shape our world

The era of greyhound racing in the U.S. is coming to an end

See how people have imagined life on Mars through history

See how NASA’s new Mars rover will explore the red planet