Mars and human settlement - news and discussion

Discussion in 'science, nature and environment' started by editor, Sep 5, 2018.

  1. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

  2. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Here's an interesting new concept:

    [​IMG]

    Mars Explorers Could Live in 'Igloo' Near Red Planet's North Pole
     
  3. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Life on Mars?

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    What on Earth could live in a salt water lake on Mars? An expert explains
     
  4. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

  5. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

  6. T & P

    T & P |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

    There is no doubt in my mind that we should aim to set up colonies on other planets- it’d be stupid not to.

    Having said that, i’d have thought it’d be more sensible to set up the first colony on the Moon. Even if the environment is very different to that of Mars, better to use a brand new technology and acquire experience at a location 3 days away from Earth rather than 8-10 months.
     
  7. NoXion

    NoXion Eat leaden death, demon...

    I think establishing orbital colonies in O'Neill cylinders would be the most optimal solution. They can be placed almost anywhere, provide greater environmental control including gravity, can be much more easily moved if necessary, have lower logistical costs due to not sitting at the bottom of a gravity well, and since we're going to have to learn how to create artificial ecosystems anyway...
     
  8. Crispy

    Crispy The following psytrance is baṉned: All

    Moon and Mars aren't all that similar really, in terms of testing equipment. The day/night cycle is different, the dust is different (jagged rather than wind-smoothed), the atmosphere is different and the gravity is weaker. There's nothing new we could learn on the Moon that we can't learn in bog-standard orbit. Once we've learned everything we can there, we may as well head straight to Mars. Moon is a distraction.
     
  9. cheesethief

    cheesethief Well-Known Member

    Might be ways off though. Would only be viable if we can develop the technology to mine asteroids and build stuff from the material directly in space. Would need a few billion rocket launches to get enough stuff launched from a planet to build one of them. Probably many generations hence, in the interim establishing off world colonies would act as a stepping stone.

    Practically speaking establishing a moon base makes more sense in the short term, although there's more appetite for a Mars base - it's just so much cooler, albeit with little practical application for a long while yet.
     
    editor likes this.
  10. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Isn't there potential fuel and water on the Moon? Surely it would be cheaper to extract water from the Moon then to try and blast it out of Earth's orbit?
     
    PippinTook likes this.
  11. Crispy

    Crispy The following psytrance is baṉned: All

    *hand waggle* Maybe. If launch costs come down like SpaceX say they will, it'll become a moot point.
     
  12. cheesethief

    cheesethief Well-Known Member

    There's some near the poles, in sheltered areas, and maybe some lurking deep in other areas where the sun can't reach. How easy it would be to extract & use is a complicated question - it's possible the economics might still make it cheaper to blast fuel off from the earth than build all the necessary infrastructure to mine it from the moon.

    Another intriguing possibility is capturing ice bearing asteroids - if we could find a modest sized one, with a few million tons of water ice, stick a rocket on it and slowly bring it into a (safe) near earth orbit, then we'd have no pesky gravity wells to worry about, and the added bonus that many asteroids are a gold mine of other valuable mineral resources.
     
  13. T & P

    T & P |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

    How about testing biospheres/ life support systems? A leaky dome three days from home is not so serious as one 10 months from safety. Yes, i’m drawing from The Martian :p
     
    PippinTook and editor like this.
  14. Don Troooomp

    Don Troooomp Condescension and embedded self importance

    Tech today is tomorrow's old hat and we're still a long way from actually getting to Mars, and even longer from setting up shop there.
    That said, I have every faith there will be human colonies on Mars in years to come because that's what humans do.
     
    PippinTook likes this.
  15. NoXion

    NoXion Eat leaden death, demon...

    editor and PippinTook like this.
  16. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

  17. Ax^

    Ax^ Silly Rabbit

    Just have to fed off the pesky space nazi's to get at it

    :hmm:
     
  18. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Another piece about using the Moon as a staging post

    Five reasons to forget Mars for now and return to the moon
     
  19. Supine

    Supine Rough Like Badger

    Isn't it all a moot point until space boffins work out how to get us there without getting radiation poisoning from the journey.
     
    SpookyFrank likes this.
  20. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

  21. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

  22. NoXion

    NoXion Eat leaden death, demon...

    Excellent video from Isaac Arthur about industrialising the Moon.

     
    mojo pixy and Signal 11 like this.
  23. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Interesting development....

    Salty Martian Water Could Have Enough Oxygen to Support Life
     
    Argonia and PippinTook like this.
  24. PippinTook

    PippinTook A flower does not ask to bloom, it just does.

  25. MikeMcc

    MikeMcc Well-Known Member

    A ggod source of info here:

    The Mars Society

    Anything by Robert Zubrin is a good read, though he is a bit opinionated towards some techniques and policies.

    So we have SpaceX developing BFR primarily for missions to Mars, though it can carry out a wide variety of missions (Moon, Starlink, satelite recovery, point-to-point). NASA funding Kilopower scalable nuclear reactor, Zubrin and the Mars Society are looking at habitats and operating procedures. Zubrin has already demonstrated In-situ refuelling technology, how it all meshes together and who carries what will be open to discussion.

    My personal opinion is that we should develop the technogies on the Moon first, it has a corrosive regoloith (different, though similar to that on Mars), but has a short return time if things go pear-shaped.
     
    Signal 11 likes this.
  26. teqniq

    teqniq DisMembered

    upload_2018-10-29_8-19-55.png

     
    NoXion, Signal 11, editor and 2 others like this.
  27. Crispy

    Crispy The following psytrance is baṉned: All

    Chaos is the right word for that sort of terrain! You'd get lost even with a map.
     
  28. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Interesting:

     
    Argonia likes this.
  29. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Mars Society says go to the Moon first:

    Do Not Stop — Go Directly to the Moon, Says Mars Society's Robert Zubrin with 'Lunar Direct' Plan
     
    PippinTook, mojo pixy and Signal 11 like this.
  30. T & P

    T & P |-o-| (-o-) |-o-|

    I think for the purpose of a short visit (first manned mission, with everyone coming back on the rocket after a few days and no-one left settling on the surface) a given mission to Mars could go ahead without doing a few landings on the Moon first- though it’d Be still be sensible, if much more costly of course.

    But planning to construct and man a base on another world for the very first time on a celestial body that is m nearly a year away, when we can prove the technology for real on another celestial body three days away seems more than a bit reckless to me. Catastrophic failure of the structure or a probe crash would kill you anywhere of course, but there must be multiple other critical scenarios where the crew could maintain life support for a few days/ weeks awaiting rescue. Almost nonexistent chance of surviving such crisis if one has to wait eight months for a repair crew to arrive.
     

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