Are we ready to colonize Mars?

By 2030, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) wants to send humans to Mars. 
SpaceX’s aspirational goal since 2017 has been to land the first group of human on Mars by 2024.
But, are we ready?

to set a foot on a planet where no human has set a foot before? Many landers & rovers have explored the planet so far and thanks to them we have good information about the planet’s surface to plan the colonization of Mars.

NASA Rovers
Image: source

Since 1997, NASA has sent 4 rovers; Sojourner, Spirit and Opportunity, and Curiosity to Mars and soon, the 5th, Perseverance rover will also land on 18 Feb 2021. These rovers are the main reason what makes colonization a possibility on Mars. They share pictures of the surface, information about the atmosphere and much more to plan our next steps. Know what all rovers have discovered so far.

Space X has planned to land two uncrewed cargo ships consisting of generators, life support systems and more, by 2022 on the Martian surface. It will help the first humans’ to set up camps in 2024. According to current plans, additional cargo will also be sent in 2024.

Interplanetary Transport System(ITS)
Interplanetary Transport System(ITS) – Image: Source

Space X’s biggest achievement is successfully manufacturing the Interplanetary Transport System(ITS) which is a set of reusable rockets as shown above. Falcon 9 is the world’s first orbital class reusable rocket which significantly helps in reducing the cost of accessing space. The company is manufacturing everything required to enable the rockets, like refueling stations.

NASA & SpaceX are working closely to make colonizing Mars successful and on other projects too. SpaceX is designing a Starship which will act like a gateway and help making the entire system more efficient. A small prototype called Starhopper is also being tested. SpaceX now handles about two-thirds of NASA’s launches, including many research payloads.

Marsha - Mars Habitat
Marsha – Mars Habitat

Company all across the world are designing habitats for future colonists. One of the best 3D pinted habitats is Marsha, it is a tall structure which would be assembled and made ready to use by robots prior to human’s arrival. It will be a multi-storey house with facilities like Rover docking port, labs, Kitchen, Garden, sleeping pods, exercise area and area for recreations.

Kale, carrots, lettuce, sweet potatoes, onions, dandelions, and hops grew very easily on a simulated Mars environment, tasting no different than their terrestrial counterparts. Check out the experiment supporting the results. Watch movie “The Martian” to get an idea of what we are talking here.

Every aspect of life is being looked into by various professional around the world to make life possible on the Red planet. NASA has selected 10 companies to conduct studies and advance technologies to collect, process and use space-based resources for missions to the Moon and Mars. Ways are being explored for future space exploration capabilities at lower costs.

We may be not ready yet but we soon will be! Know what is Elon Musk planning for the colony in Mars.

Have you ever wondered how astronauts go to the toilet? Check this video, time for a laugh!

What Mars is like?

Mars is one of the favorable choices because it has been found that Mars supported life earlier and there are evidences to support the existence of essential things like water. NASA’s Spirit and Opportunity rovers found evidence that water once flowed on Mars and they found minerals that are only formed in water.

Korolev crater
This image from ESA’s Mars Express shows Korolev crater, and is composed of five observations, each one from a different orbit of the spacecraft. It’s High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC) instrument took the data that formed the image. (Image credit: ESA/DLR/FU Berlin, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO )

The researchers set their sights on the planet’s poles, which contain ice deposits that have built up over many thousands of years. These deposits are thought to contain large amounts of water ice, which could potentially be extracted and turned into liquid water.

NASA’s Mars Global Surveyor orbited the Red Planet for nine years. The orbiter found that Mars once had a magnetic field like Earth’s that shielded it from deadly cosmic rays. Life there would not be easy and would take many years or even decades to become sustainable. It is the curiosity of mankind that is leading us to such future. There are people who don’t believe that colonization of Mars is possible. Know what they think.

Mars is similar to Earth in many ways, it has seasons similar to Earth. Martian year is about 1.88 Earth years and all the seasons last twice the duration as compared to Earth.

The Martian day is also very close in duration to Earth’s. A solar day on Mars is 24 hours, 39 minutes and 35.244 seconds. Mars is the fourth planet from the sun and the next planet beyond Earth. It is, on average, more than 142 million miles from the sun. Mars is very cold. The average temperature on Mars is minus 80 degrees Fahrenheit — way below freezing!

Martian atmosphere
Martian atmosphere

Its surface is rocky, with canyons, volcanoes, dry lake beds and craters all over it. Red dust covers most of its surface. Mars has clouds and wind just like Earth. Sometimes the wind blows the red dust into a dust storm. Tiny dust storms can look like tornados and large ones can be seen from Earth. Mars’ large storms sometimes cover the whole planet. A controlled environment would be necessary all the time.

Mars is about one-sixth the size of Earth. It has about one-third the gravity of Earth. A rock dropped on Mars would fall more slowly than a rock falls on Earth. A person who weighs 100 pounds on Earth would only weigh about 37 pounds on Mars because of the reduced gravity.

Mars’ atmosphere is much thinner than Earth’s. The atmosphere of Mars contains more than 95 percent carbon dioxide and much less than 1 percent oxygen.

The Greeks called Mars, the planet Ares. Mars has two small moons. Their names are Phobos and Deimos. They are named for the sons of Ares, the Greek god of war. Phobos means “fear,” and Deimos means “flight.”

Pin for later!

Are we ready to colonize Mars?
Are we ready to colonize Mars?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *