Anyone under 55 and with nothing much to do is eligible for some fairly easy money.

We all know someone who spends all day cooped up at home, or some of us may be those reclusive types ourselves, who enjoy the security that four walls provide around the clock. Often there’s a certain social stigma to those who shun social interactions on such a level, but for one fleeting fortnight it can mean big cash for a lucky eight individuals.

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) is currently recruiting eight people to spend 14 days and 13 nights inside their simulated space station. This is part of an ongoing experiment to establish more accurate stress markers for their astronauts who must be confined for long periods of time while in space.

Those selected will stay locked away from the outside world with none of their personal belongings in a section of the Tsukuba Space Center set up to recreate life on the International Space Station. There test subjects will be asked to perform various tasks while their stress levels are measured.

▼ In space, no one can hear you vent.

As long as you’re under 55, in good health, and willing to take part in this experiment, then you are eligible to apply. Those who are selected and make it through the weeks will be remunerated with a cool 380,000 yen (US$3,500) that’ll pay off their Netflix subscriptions well into 2041.

That boils down to about 1,038 yen (US$9.55) an hour, considering that even when they’re sleeping they’re still participating in the experiment and thus “working.” That’s not a bad wage at all and well above the 796 yen (US$7.32) minimum wage in the area.

Now sure, the idea of a suspiciously large amount of money to have your stress levels tested sounds an awful lot like the premise of a horror movie, but any way you cut it, three grand is nothing to sneeze at. I think I just might risk having a ring of laser cutters locked around my neck so I can finally get that used Corolla I’ve had my eye on. It’s beige!

And then there’s all that jazz about contributing to space travel and the overall upliftment of humanity. That’s good stuff too.

If you feel the same way, then head over to the Japan Clinical Volunteer Network application page before noon on 31 January. It’s all in Japanese, but nowhere do they say foreigners can’t apply. In fact, if they really wanted to simulate life on the ISS, it’d probably be good to mix some non-Japanese people in there too.

They don’t say if travel expenses are included, but they likely are not. Still, Tsukuba’s a lovely place to visit, and you could make a nice little vacation out of it. You can even check out Tsukuba Space Center’s visitor map that coincidentally looks just like an anime girl when you squint your eyes!

Source: JCVN, Twitter/@JCVN_JP, JAXA
Top image: Pakutaso
Insert image: Pakutaso

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