A Mars mission represents the extreme in terms of both distance and uncharted environment, wrote UTMB’s Sheryl L. Bishop, a social psychologist and expert in survival in extreme conditions. “The selection, monitoring and support of Mars bound crews will challenge existing technology and knowledge. The human, at the center, represents the greatest strength and the greatest weakness for a Mars mission. Human response to confined and isolated environments has been shown to be characterized by serious stressors and a Mars mission will represent the most extreme of such environments. The impact of such stressors on coping, performance, motivation, behavior, cognitive functioning and psychological well-being must be taken into account. The extraordinary duration of the mission poses special challenges in planning for mission support since very different needs may be driven by particular phases of the mission. Selection, monitoring and support will similarly be significantly affected by anticipating potential differential characteristics and needs across the travel phases to and from Mars and the period on the planet’s surface.”