Nasa administrator says first person to walk on Mars will ‘likely’ be a woman

The head of Nasa says the first person on Mars is “likely to be” a woman.

During a guest appearance on the science and technology radio show “Science Friday” Nasa Administrator Jim Bridenstine teased the possibility of a woman carrying on the legacy of Neil Armstrong when humans first go to Mars.

But, regardless of who is first to set foot on the red planet Mr Bridenstine said that women will “absolutely” be included on the space agency’s next trip to the moon.

“Nasa is committed to making sure we have a broad and diverse set of talent and we’re looking forward to the first woman on the moon,” he said.

Mr Bridenstine previously stated that Nasa’s nearer-term goal is to get astronauts back to the moon, and to establish a permanent base there for the first time in human history.

“We are going to the moon with innovative new technologies and systems to explore more locations across the surface than we ever thought possible. This time, when we go to the moon, we will stay,” he said last month.

Efforts to bring humans back to both the moon and to Mars have led to a collaboration between Nasa, as well as partners in the private sphere including companies that will build out the lunar economy.

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Nasa says that some of the most pressing challenges it faces before it can go to Mars include understanding how humans adapt to living in space, and how to handle trash waste.

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