Israeli scientists finish Mars sim experiment

A team of Israeli scientists has completed a four-day mock mission to Mars in the arid environs of the Negev desert, the Israeli Science and Technology Ministry said on Sunday. The experiment, dubbed D-Mars, was held near the isolated Israeli township of Mitzpe Ramon, where the landscape is similar to the arid desolation of the Red Planet. The scientists carried out mock tests on radiation, satellite communications and the psychological effects of isolation, as well as looking for signs of life. Guy Ron, a nuclear physics professor who took part in D-Mars, told Reuters the experiment also aimed to raise public interest in space travel.