Do you think we'll ever colonise Mars?

I know there are a few missions planned to colonise Mars, some private others by nations.
Do you think we’ll ever make it that far or feel that the obstacles too great for mankind to overcome?

I have no doubts, we will get there, it’s just a matter of time.

If we don’t destroy ourselves first.

Not for a while at least.

To put it simply, the technology is coming together, but it may be a fool’s errand if we don’t take the incremental step of building a base on the Moon first (just to show that the technology to colonize other worlds exists and works as it should).

The Moon is a few days away with current propulsion systems, Mars is around a year away, not really anything to sneeze at.

The Sojourner mars rover is, by todays standard, and archaic piece of equipment. a 1MHz processor a top speed of 0.5 meters per minute, but in other ways, it’s very very impressive.
It could operate at sub-zero temperatures. It (and the main lander) survived impacting a planet in airbags.

Getting to mars is easy enough, we can fling stuff all over the solar system (though it does cost a lot of money), but getting back is hard. Have you noticed we haven’t done any sample-return missions for anything other than the moon yet?

But, in my opinion, we should have got to mars years ago. We got the the moon in the 70’s, and in the past 45 years, haven’t gone below LEO. What have we done instead? Not a whole lot.

We need to send a nuclear reactor and have a team of rovers with laser sintering powerful enough to make soda glass and with the ability to gather elements to,3d print metal with, this effort needs the ability to 3d print electronics,

if we have 3d printers printing rovers that gather material to print more rovers, eventually then half of them could turn there attention to turning there mine shafts into habitats, and the first humans could land and occupy them.

And if something goes wrong then there’s not much you can do to fix it (because even a command from Earth can take several minutes before a rover picks it up).

You would have to make sure the (inevitably complex) software is bulletproof enough and stable enough to protect the operations in a dynamic environment (which also means making sure that the technology works by testing it here on Earth).

yes human boots on the ground would be good, but until you’re producing food, o2 and energy to support 8 people I would not send 2

(4x redundancy)

I’d like to see us get to the moon, first.

But we may have to just be realistic, as we lately have been when exploring, say, the depths of the ocean. Sure, the Bathyscaphe Trieste went to the bottom of the Challenger Deep … and James Cameron did it just to say that somebody else did it … but there just might be places that Homo Sapiens is simply not fit to go. Such as, “anywhere outside the most-immediate magnetosphere of Planet Earth.”

Unfortunately, there is a gigantic thermonuclear fusion reactor “only” 96 million miles away, and in the near-vacuum of outer space there is nothing to counter the immense amount of hellish radiation that it pours out. Plenty of geosynchronous sattelites have been fried to a crisp by the thing. A carbon-based life form whose skin is susceptible to sunburn realistically cannot survive “out there.”

I’m glad … maybe … that we found a way to honor John F. Kennedy’s technologically impossible challenge. But, like it or not, there are many things that, at the present state of technology at least, are not possible:frowning:

yet!! :slight_smile:

What we can do, meanwhile, is to send robotic probes … and we’ve achieved some pretty remarkable technical successes with some damned-primitive equipment. Like, photographing Pluto. Or, probing the bottom of the Challenger Deep.

There is such a thing as radiation shielding which can allow people to travel to Mars, but the challenge is making it effective enough to only require a thin layer of it on spacecraft.

That’s another thing, Mars doesn’t have a magnetic field so you would need a system to block or even deflect radiation from a potential colony (and it’s possible for radiation spikes to occur for months on end).

Russia will begin Moon colonization in 2030

“‘We are going to the Moon forever,’ the Russian Deputy PM said in April, and it was not just empty words. It appears Russia does plan to colonize the Moon by 2030 and the first stage of the ambitious project may start as soon as two years from now.”

On your mark. Get set… GO!

There is such a thing as radiation shielding which can allow people to travel to Mars, but the challenge is making it effective enough to only require a thin layer of it on spacecraft.

It’s called water.
You have to store your water somewhere anyway, and if you store it around your crew compartment, they get radiation shielded.

There is no technical reason why we haven’t gone to mars. We have had the technology for a long time now. What we don’t have is the incentive. America went to the moon to beat the soviets there for fear they would militarize it. America will build a base on the moon if it looks liek someone else will gain something massive from it. They will sent people to mars if <insert reason> here.

What we kind-of need is another war. Wars are where technology comes from. WW2 took us from very low electrical tech to the start of computers. The cold war took it from valves to transistors. Since then, there hasn’t been anything new developed - just incremental upgrades of what we have.
I’m not saying war is good (if definitely isn’t), but the fact is that it unites the brain-power of a country to try and create things faster than the other guy.

It doesn’t mean we should just ‘do it’ without a lot of careful planning first (especially if we’re to skip the moon).

In this country at least, chances are we would be just one accidental crew death away from protests, lawsuits, and a large movement to end the endeavor altogether (a notable amount of people these days really don’t like the idea of sending others into situations where they may or may not come back, even if they were trained).

I wonder if this substance can be made from moon regolith in zero G ?

mine the moon, ship materials to space, build Steel glass bubble 4 ft thick?

We need some way to mimic Earth’s atmosphere. I got this idea where we should plant trees inside domes. I mean we create an artificial rainforest inside a huge dome.

I think terraforming the atmosphere by seeding the planet with microbial, chemical releasing life would be a way forward, but then you have the problem that Mars is really, really bad at holding onto its atmosphere, it’s small size doesn’t help either.

We’ll probably go before we expect that we will. Colonization is probably going to happen but it depends on a lot of factors. One of the main things to consider is where the resources will come from. This means finding out what resources will be available on Mars and what we will be capable of producing there… I doubt that we really have a good sense of what can be done in that respect. We only recently have found what we think is liquid water; and it’s probably highly saline.

I suspect that we will colonize Mars; but I could’n’t say how long it might take or how large of a presence we might have there.

Terraforming has some challenges because Mars lacks an electromagnetic field. This is needed to keep atmosphere. Heating the core might work, I guess; but it depends on the amount of iron that Mars is composed of and I’m not sure what that is. Maybe a nuclear explosion deep beneath the surface or even collide the two moons to produce a larger moon to create more tidal force; but I haven’t researched the possibility of that either.

There are probably some knowledgeable people somewhere that have thought about it in detail.

It’s damned easy to say that “war is good for the economy” when neither you nor your children might die in one.

Fact is, the USA has been in an un-declared state of War ever since it lost the wars in Korea and Vietnam, and what it has done is to suck the economy dry. It finally dawned on the military industrialists that war-protesters were not protesting against “war” at all: they were protesting against the possibility of being drafted.

As far as colonization is concerned, you may remember the project in southern Arizona in which a group of experimenters locked themselves in an earth-bound micro-climate and attempted to live there for a year. Lots of things that no one had anticipated went wrong … this, of course, being the reason why the experiment was conducted. A particular problem was the air. They didn’t know, for example, that the soil contains iron and that it oxidizes, and so on. Bacterial populations flourished unexpectedly. And so on. The conclusion of the experiment was that we still don’t know how to build an isolated human colony, even on Earth. The Biosphere II facility continues to be used for experiments, although not with human beings inside (for long periods).

I think the Biosphere 2 is a little more complex than what would be needed for keeping people alive. It’s more of a closed version of a natural ecosystem.

DARPA is working on Atomically Precise Manufacturing (Nano-Assembler) and that could help a lot. Being able to produce what is needed from the raw elements might be a solution for everything but breathable air. It’s a difficult project though.

Forget about air and water.
There won’t be fast internet on Mars, can you imagine the ping when playing Starcraft 2?