National Aeronautics and Space Administration Planetary Protection Office
About the Office





Mission Categories

Solar System Bodies

List of Missions

Mission Design & Planning

Mission Requirements

Mars Requirements

International Policy

Workshops in Planetary Protection

History of Planetary Protection

Course in Planetary Protection

Glossary of Terms



Human Missions & Planetary Protection

Workshop on Refining Planetary Protection Requirement for Human Missions

Cosponsor: COSPAR

Location & Dates:
October 25-27, 2016
Lunar Planetary Institute, Houston, TX

Final Documents

Location & Dates

  • October 25-27, 2016; Lunar Planetary Institute, Houston, TX

Objectives & Plan

The objective of this workshop is to continue working towards the development of a more detailed COSPAR Planetary Protection Policy for human missions, focusing on both the ultimate goal of human Mars missions and on more proximate destinations for humans along a pathway leading to Mars. This will be accomplished by reviewing and analyzing previously identified knowledge gaps associated with planetary protection needs for missions beyond Earth orbit, and by analyzing the gaps in relation to future human missions to Mars, the Earth’s Moon and an Asteroid. Our goal is to build on earlier workshops and analyses that led to the human exploration language in the current COSPAR Planetary Protection Policy. The specific questions addressed in this workshop are described in the following document: Workshop Objectives (docx).
  • Study Area 1: Microbial and human health monitoring
  • Study Area 2: Technology and operations for contamination control
  • Study Area 3: Natural transport of contamination on Mars


Introductory Material