The U.S. Department of State, NASA, American aerospace firms, European and Russian space officials have joined forces to study human planetary missions, principally to land an international expedition on Mars later this century. The U.S.-funded work is quietly underway through the International Science and Technology Center (ISTC). The ISTC in an intergovernmental group created in 1992 by an agreement between the European Union, Japan, the Russian Federation, and the United States. ISTC is headquartered in Moscow. Nearly a half-billion dollars has been spent to date by ISTC, the funding throughput for a multi-country campaign to corral and convince Russian and Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) scientists and engineers to redirect their talent toward peaceful and non-proliferation activities.