Colonizing Mars a reality?

Discussion in 'Odds & Ends' started by Highway Gambler, Feb 19, 2014.

  1. Highway Gambler

    Highway Gambler New User

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  2. Overdrive

    Overdrive Legend

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    Mastering interstellar travel would be more beneficial than colonizing Mars. However, I can see the colonization of Mars occurring between 100-200 years.
     
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  3. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

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    ^^ Article in science section of NY Times a few weeks ago dealt with the health hazards of long distance space travel, specifically a hypothetical trip to Mars. Doesn't look very appealing. As for "interstellar travel" this seems unlikely since the nearest star would take about 5 years to reach travelling at the speed of light, a task that special relativity suggests would increase your mass to something approaching infinity.
     
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  4. r2473

    r2473 Legend

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    Mars ain't the kind of place to raise your kids
    In fact it's cold as hell
    And there's no one there to raise them if you did


    Anyway, I think its going to be a long, long time.
     
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  5. Manus Domini

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    Hopefully we colonize the Martians, before the Martians colonize us.
     
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  6. Sentinel

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    If you ask me, interstellar travel should be #1 on mankind's agenda (although slightly long-term, but still on top). But for that we need to stop all these silly wars, this infighting which is sucking up science, money, time, and brainpower. We need to get mundane stuff totally automated so we don't need to struggle to make ends meet all our life.

    All daily chores and work need to taken care of by robots or automation so we do not _have_ to work.

    Then science can focus on important things like interstellar travel. It just sucks that our entire lives are spent trying to pay bills and doing stuff that is just so uncreative. Science needs to be creative and free too, not tied down and stifled by industrial lobbies and politicians afraid of change.

    I know my thoughts on this are totally uninformed and silly, but i'd like people who know better to respond.

    To repeat and summarize, it absolutely and totally sucks that interstellar travel is on no one's agenda, on no one's horizon even. Are we (the living) dead ?
     
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  7. PhrygianDominant

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    Sentinel for President
     
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  8. NadalDramaQueen

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    Star Trek or bust. :)
     
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  9. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

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    yes.....uninformed. The nearest star is what, about 5 light years away? So that's five years to get there if you travel at the speed of light, 186,000 miles per second. Matter-energy equations tell us that your mass increases as your velocity does, and at those very high speeds your mass would approach infinite, if you can consider such a thing. So no sensible scientist foresees how such travel would be feasible. And if it were, you're still talking about at least 10 years round-trip -- and that's the NEAREST star, which might not even have planets (remember that the star itself is merely a ball of hydrogen fusion fire, not a place you'd care to vacation).
     
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  10. Highway Gambler

    Highway Gambler New User

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    This is from their site regarding the health hazards of long distance travel:

    "A recent study of International Space Station (ISS) astronauts, with mission durations ranging from 4-6 months, showed a maximum loss of 30% muscle performance (and maximum loss of 15% muscle mass). However, we intend even to lower these numbers. With recent and emerging scientific research of effective long-duration countermeasures, Mars One will take advantage of the ~10 years prior to the launch of the first colonization mission to observe and select the most suitable astronauts and countermeasures to ensure a safe and successful mission."

    They also mention decreases in bone density and aerobic capacity. It definitely sounds unappealing, but it doesn't seem like something that would prevent us from going. They seem optimistic about minimizing the health hazards.

    According to their roadmap, the first crew of four people will land in 2025. Not too far away, if all goes as planned.
     
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  11. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

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    ^^ lots more risks than that, including blindness. It's thought that a zero gravity environment would cause cerebrospinal fluid to redistribute in such a way as to increase pressure at the back of your eyeballs, possibly leading to blindness.
     
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  12. Highway Gambler

    Highway Gambler New User

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    That would put a damper on my one-way trip to Mars.
     
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  13. r2473

    r2473 Legend

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  14. Highway Gambler

    Highway Gambler New User

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    "Dr. Weir briefs the crew that the Event Horizon was built to test an experimental gravity drive which generates an artificial black hole to use the immense gravitational power to bridge two points in spacetime, greatly reducing travel time over astronomical distances."
     
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  15. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    The more recent books do not use the equation which shows mass increase. They club the denominator (which is less than 1) with the energy term. The mass is assumed to remain the same as the rest mass. Look at the formula for Ek in the section "Relativistic kinetic energy of rigid bodies" in http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kinetic_energy. In older formulations, the m in the second term used to be written as m0, and the m in the first term would have the denominator included in it, to describe m as more than m0.

    The more problematic fact is the acceleration required to get to the high speeds, which will destroy the body.
     
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  16. Forehand Of Doom

    Forehand Of Doom Banned

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    I think people need to get their priorities straight. The first order of business should be establishing an anti asteroid strategy to protect Earth from a catastrophic impact. There have been some close calls, and it only takes one impact to send humankind back to the Stone Age (or to the pool of Primordial Soup).

    Also, reversing climate control, eradicating nuclear energy, abolishing atomic warhead stockpiles, controling overpopulation...

    The only benefit of colonizing Mars would be to increase the living space for human kind and avoid having all eggs in the same basket. But it would be far more intelligent to take care of the planet we have now, and protect it. Perhaps even colonizing the deep seas. The cost/benefit ratio for colonizing Mars is very bad and it doesn't make any sense from a practical point of view.
     
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  17. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

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    ^^ there is a group called Spacewatch at the University of Arizona's Lunar and Planetary Lab (of which my brother was Director, before leaving for Rice U.). One of its missions is to monitor for asteroids that might present a hazard to earth. Things look rosy enough for the moment.
     
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  18. r2473

    r2473 Legend

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    Perfect timing. Paleo man is all the rage these days.
     
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  19. Manus Domini

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    For all we know, that is. One could be on its path towards the Earth any second http://www.slate.com/blogs/bad_astronomy/2013/12/11/near_earth_asteroid_2013_xy8_pays_earth_a_visit.html
     
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  20. chrischris

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    Why not opt for colonizing the desert and outback instead? it fairly sandy and rocky too but the temps can be human and the fare return is cheaper .
     
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  21. Forehand Of Doom

    Forehand Of Doom Banned

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    That's good to know, ollinger. But I am a little pessimistic.

    It doesn't take that big a rock to cause a lot of damage, and I don't think enough is being done to scan space in order to give an early enough warning. Haven't we had some near misses within the past few years?

    The Tunguska disaster is thought to have been caused by a relatively small asteroid. Something a bit bigger, and it might be fatal.
     
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  22. Mainad

    Mainad G.O.A.T.

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    Take a look at the lawman
    Beating up the wrong guy
    Oh man, wonder if he'll ever know
    He's in the best-selling show
    Is there life on Mars?


    David Bowie
     
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  23. Forehand Of Doom

    Forehand Of Doom Banned

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    Indeed, these are my thoughts exactly. Terraform Death Valley. :)
     
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  24. Dedans Penthouse

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    It's a crude, crude world

    Sage idea, and who knows maybe they'll come across some bumbling crude......oil that is....black gold....Texas tea...
     
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  25. jswinf

    jswinf Professional

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    I understand Martian gravity is much weaker than Earth's, so it would be too difficult to keep the ball from going long.
     
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  26. KineticChain

    KineticChain Professional

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    I mean these are not unsolvable problems. For example.. make the craft spin and it will introduce an artificial gravity via centrifugal force (or centripetal? i forget). But like any design, there are drawbacks and lost efficiency. Which is stuff these engineers are experts in and have thought a lot more about than me or anyone else. Guess we'll just have to wait and see what the design proposals are
     
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  27. Forehand Of Doom

    Forehand Of Doom Banned

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    Terraforming a planet is not feasible with current technology. If they could even build a stable model with a viable atmosphere providing conditions suitable for life (including shielding from solar radiation, pressure, and temperature ranges), they would need to source an immense amount of gas/water to make things work. Taking these from Earth wouldn't be a good idea for many reasons. The least of your problems would be transportation, and the worst would probably be that you would be disrupting Earth's balance in doing so.
     
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  28. NadalDramaQueen

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    Haha, reminds me of this from xkcd: http://xkcd.com/123/
     
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  29. Goosehead

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    I was reading some stuff about going to mars..and I recently watched a 'horizon' type programme about the problems humans face getting there.

    is it really going to happen by 2019 ?...we would all be amazed if it did happen by then.
     
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  30. Forehand Of Doom

    Forehand Of Doom Banned

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    I volunteer The Kardashians for the mission, including Kanye West.
     
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  31. Andyroo10567

    Andyroo10567 Professional

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    Hopefully they don't run into "4th world problems".... hehehehe
     
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  32. Sentinel

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    I am expecting replies or rebuttals on the idea, not the science behind it. It is my fault, i did not make myself clear. I am not talking about causal vacationing.

    You are perhaps familiar with O'Neill Cylinders or generational ships. In such cases, it would be essentially a one-way trip. The ONC is a world in itself, so its obviously very high tech. It revolves so that takes care of a 1G gravity. One could point it to some nearby or distant star system but that's not really the point. Once a couple generations have lived on it, they really won't care about getting out on a planet, or even feel nostalgic about the Earth. For them that is the world.

    You cannot reach this level of technology unless you specifically aim for it. Unless mankind is willing to pool its resources. Even then it could take centuries. But the start has to be made. Otherwise, i suspect we will continue spending the rest of our time (I mean centuries) misusing science either for war, or for silly entertainment/ gimmicks, whilst polluting the water, air and soil further.
     
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  33. Sentinel

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    There is a Mars trilogy which has excellent reviews. I have been wanting to read it for ages, i don't think i will ever get time. It think it is Red Mars, Green Mars and Blue Mars. You get the drift.

    Maybe if we can all stop fighting over who is the GOAT, i could get around to reading them :)
     
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  34. Sentinel

    Sentinel Bionic Poster

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    Also, the atmosphere is thin, so topspin won't work. Roger will beat Rafa every time :D

    But it will be red clay, Rafa's fave surface, so you can never tell.

    By when will we be having a slam on Mars ?
     
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  35. Forehand Of Doom

    Forehand Of Doom Banned

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    Aha! No more fighting from me, Sentinel. I've always known Federer was the true GOAT.

    Not really. Pancho Gonzalez is actually the GOAT ;)
     
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  36. Forehand Of Doom

    Forehand Of Doom Banned

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    Good points! Also due to the lower gravity Djoker would have more time to set up his overheads, which I guess would be good for him.
     
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  37. Dedans Penthouse

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    .

    No can do: Kim Kardashian's ass would explode at 20,000 feet.


    __________________
     
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  38. Forehand Of Doom

    Forehand Of Doom Banned

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    What is the downside? ;)
     
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  39. dParis

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    See, even chrischris can make at least one sensible/clever post. Why is it so impossibly difficult for Bartleby to do this? The dude is like 0/9,000.
     
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  40. Dimcorner

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    I don't think it will happen any time soon. There is no magnetic field to shield life from getting totally messed up by radiation. Sure you can live underground but then why not just hang out on the moon instead then? Other than bringing back rocks and bragging rights I don't see a benefit of spending that much resources to just go to Mars. Mining asteroids might be a better deal if you had to go somewhere.

    Also about pooling resources on earth, ain't going to happen. Say you get robots to do the mundane stuff, what are you going to do with the people that got their jobs displaced by robots? What if they are just not cut out to be engineers or scientists? I mean now you are talking WAY more unemployed people vs the elite scientists that think they know everything. That's like easy recipe for revolution.

    Everyone will be taken care of so no need to work? So why go to school? People will start using WAY more resources than they do now. Wanna go to Europe? Sure it's free!! Want to come back the same day home? Sure it's free! Put a limit? Who decides this limit? Why should the person who didn't go to school get the same limit as me who went to school and became a scientist? Why do they get all the perks but none of the work?

    Well there was this invention called money...
     
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  41. chrischris

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    Sure the chance is higher up there on planet M. Plus the pipeline cost is a bit cheaper.
     
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  42. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    What about the bank teller whose job got replaced by an ATM? Do you feel sorry for him? What about the maids who got replaced by washing machines?

    The world does not stand still. At every point of time, there are winners and losers.
     
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  43. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    But the lesser gravity means the balls would kick higher to Federer's backhand, and he will be toast.
     
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  44. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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  45. Sentinel

    Sentinel Bionic Poster

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    Don't worry about that dear chap. All it takes is a couple of Indians, we'll repopulate the earth in no time. Send us anywhere, even Mars, and you'll have a flourishing population of know-it-alls like suresh and me and tushylovesrafa :D

    At the rate we are going, the galaxy won't be enough.
     
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  46. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    I was answering a post saying that all daily chores and menial work to be done by robots so we don't have to work and concentrate on this project. I agree that there are winners and losers and people will find something else to do. My point was that you can automate ALL work. People will have to work in other things besides the Mars program and you can't really just throw more people at the program to make it faster. It makes no sense to throw a few hundred sous chefs (which were now replaced by robotic work) to the program.

    Also some people enjoy doing house chores in order to get their mind of the issue and not burn out.
     
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  47. chrischris

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    Oh the Startrek generation..
     
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  48. Sentinel

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    I am not sure you even read the post properly, I did not say everyone had to be thrown into the space program. I did say that everyone would not have to work ,,, in other words would not be forced to work if they did not want to. That means if you do enjoy washing dishes then fine. I also spoke of creativity and the arts, today artists (or sportspersons) often have to worry about paying bills, for us that's the first thing, not what we really want to do.

    I am talking of science taking the drudgery out. By such a time several generations would have passed so our mindsets would have changed. But still people are still free to adopt old ways. I also assume/think that such progress will largely make concepts like nations obsolete, so it will be hard to justify war. I am talking of science being able to reconstitute food so that agriculture and the whole loop will not be required. We might have machines that can manufacture food for us from basic raw materials.

    I feel the only way people can be content fighting wars, spending their entire lives enhancing their images, is because they have never looked up at the stars and wondered what was there, or ached to know more about the universe we are a part of. Thus, the individual dream is only of more power, status, sex, money etc.

    The sticky part is the huge population.
     
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  49. Sentinel

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    oh dear, we still have people here who haven't heard of the greenhouse effect. You know ... dust cover blocking out the sun and stuff like that , come on, do i have to spell it out to you :D
     
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  50. chrischris

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    Agree...:)
    Jeez.. we are alive because of the greenhouse gases IN balance. BUT....
     
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