Professor Stephen Hawking was eager to see us search for another planet to call home. The immediate planet that strikes our minds is Mars. That is because our options for becoming a multi-planetary species within our solar system are limited and Mars is the only suitable planet. NASA is building an engine that could take us there. Many public and private organizations are conducting research for a permanent human presence on Mars. NASA, Roscosmos and the China National Space Administration fall under the public organizations that are carrying this research work. Private organizations include Mars One, SpaceX, Lockheed Martin and Boeing. But would it be really worthy of establishing a base on the red planet!
Let’s first go through the suitable conditions, Mars is offering for a human colonization.
- Mars requires less amount of energy per unit mass to reach from Earth than any other planet except Venus.
- The surface area of Mars is 28.4% of Earth’s which is almost similar to the amount of dry land on Earth (which 29.2% of the Earth’s surface)
- The Martial day is very close in duration to that of the Earth. A solar day on Mars is 24 hours, 39 minutes and 35.244 seconds.
- Mars has seasons similar to Earth, but they last nearly twice as long.
- Surface water is transiently available on Mars.
- Martian atmosphere is 95% carbon dioxide, 3% nitrogen, 1.6% argon and traces of other gases including oxygen totally less than 0.4%.
- Mars is 52% farther from the Sun, so the amount of solar energy reaching the atmosphere of Mars is 43.3% of what reaches the Earth’s atmosphere. However, due to the thinner atmosphere of Mars, a higher amount of solar energy reaches the surface.
- Being on Mars is fun because its gravity is 37% of that of Earth, so you could able to lift heavy things and ponder around.
- The atmosphere of Mars could be made suitable by warming up the planet because early Mars was a lot like Earth.
Purpose of Colonization:
Now looking at the purpose of colonization, they include economic interests, long-term scientific research. But the main reason behind Mars-colonization is for a Life Backup. Our technology has advanced to back up every data say from research stats to personal information. In fact, seeds are also backed up in the Doomsday bank, Norway. Alright! Taking the future under consideration, people started preserving food, shelter, money, and data. But what about the consequences of a drastic increase in global warming and pollution? What if that leads to the extinction of humans on Earth? How to create a backup for a human life? The only solution is to establish a civilization on Mars.
Plan to Colonize:
Elon Musk, founder and CEO of SpaceX has planned his Mars-colonization vision. His vision centers on a reusable rocket-and-spaceship combo, powered by the strongest engine ever. The rockets will be launching the spaceships to Earth orbit and then come back. Meanwhile, the spaceships will remain in orbit, and then leave when Earth and Mars align favorably, which happens once every 26 months. Musk aims to send more spaceships, each carrying 100 or more people. Therefore, he assumed, the architecture could get nearly 1 million people to Mars within the next 50 to 100 years.
Even though Mars is considered as a hospitable planet for colonization and extensive research is being made, human survival would require complex life-support measures and live in such artificial conditions, the efforts for which are still on a run.
Student at Andhra university college of engineering