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Forum » SpaceEngine » Science and Astronomy Discussions » Mars One 2023 (The first permanent Human Settlement in Mars)
Mars One 2023
HarbingerDawnDate: Thursday, 25.04.2013, 05:34 | Message # 31
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Quote (desertsoldier22)
why go then

To establish a settlement, that's the whole point. It's not a scientific mission.

Quote (desertsoldier22)
so they expect a group of people to live in Zero-G for 8 months then land on Mars and somehow build a colony in 1/3 gravity with heavy Spacesuits and atrophied muscles and bone.

Valeri Polyakov spent 437 days in space and was able to walk immediately after returning to Earth, so clearly it's not an implausible idea. Also, I didn't see anywhere that it said they had to walk around in suits within minutes of reaching the ground so I don't think it would be a major issue.





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TimDate: Thursday, 25.04.2013, 16:22 | Message # 32
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Can't agree with the last one, Mars is the planet most similar to Earth that is currently within our reach. If there is no life on Mars (which is also what I expect), there are still many more things we can learn there. If not for the characteristics of the planet, then be it about the influence of long spacemissions on men and to test our technological potential.

I do not doubt Mars One would be able to put men on Mars, even though they may not be as well prepared as one would want, I'm sure they'll do the necessary. My problem is also with the reality show, that's like an insult to science. Besides, I'm sure any other company that would land on mars will film it, but I'm also against placing people on Mars for good.
This is not a place where one could grow old. How will they sustain them if budget runs low? What if one of the astronauts do get regrets?

I find a colony on Mars a very good idea, but, even though it would greatly increase the costs, it would be better if it were a temporary outpost.

Also,running an application in which anyone who has $38 can apply is an insult towards people who dedicated their entire life to science.
 
HarbingerDawnDate: Thursday, 25.04.2013, 16:34 | Message # 33
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Quote (Tim)
that's like an insult to science.

Mars One is not a scientific mission.

Quote (Tim)
I'm also against placing people on Mars for good.

We have to do this eventually, why are you against it?

Quote (Tim)
This is not a place where one could grow old.

Yes it is, why do you say that?

Quote (Tim)
How will they sustain them if budget runs low?

This is a good point as far as Mars One goes, though it's worth noting that it is not an issue for all potential Mars colonies. A well-planned Martian colony would be self-sufficient, and therefore budget would not be an issue after the colony was established.

Quote (Tim)
even though it would greatly increase the costs

No it wouldn't, see above.

Quote (Tim)
Also,running an application in which anyone who has $38 can apply is an insult towards people who dedicated their entire life to science.

The application fee is necessary for two reasons. 1) to discourage people who aren't serious from applying, and 2) to help fund the project. And again, Mars One is not a scientific mission and they are not specifically seeking scientists to be their astronauts.

Quote (Tim)
I do not doubt Mars One would be able to put men on Mars

Their funding plans and absurd timetable, as well as other problems with the plans they've revealed so far, are evidence that they are not competent enough to do this, if not for technical reasons then for reasons of money. So I do doubt that they will be able to put people on Mars, in fact I would bet money that they won't.





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TimDate: Thursday, 25.04.2013, 17:05 | Message # 34
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About placing people on Mars for good, I didn't say ever. I'm saying this isn't the time to do it. We should approach it more carefully. Starting with a short stay a few times would be good practice and couldn't do any bad.

Why is it not a place to grow old?
1st of all, medical care. Of course you can take a whole lot of preventive gear with you, you would never be able to get the care you'd get on Earth.

And also, because it is hard to say now, how you will feel about it when you're old. I can imagine many people (including myself) long for the experience of walking and living on another celestial body, but I can also imagine one would like to spend his final years with friends and family, home on good old Earth. :P

I know it's a matter of preferences, but I think generally speaking this would be true.
 
HarbingerDawnDate: Thursday, 25.04.2013, 17:15 | Message # 35
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Quote (Tim)
Of course you can take a whole lot of preventive gear with you, you would never be able to get the care you'd get on Earth.

This is true, as it would be for literally any new colony no matter where you go. And there are plenty of people on Earth who do not have access to good medical care and who grow very old, and many of the things that are likely to make you sick are related to external biological factors which would mostly not exist in a Martian colony, so I would say that you could definitely grow old there.

Quote (Tim)
And also, because it is hard to say now, how you will feel about it when you're old.

This is something that people would have to take into account when signing up to be a colonist, and is one of the psychological factors that would have to be tested for when selecting colonists. Things like this are taken into account by the people who plan the colonist selection and training process. Also, nowhere does anyone say that you must go to Mars forever, just go for a long time and without any intention of coming home. It is very likely that 20 years later there would be some opportunity to return to Earth for a visit, or even to stay. And maybe you would not have to wait even 20 years. The point is that return to Earth will almost certainly be an option for people who wish to do so after having spent a very long time on Mars. But I don't think this would be a big problem.

Quote (Tim)
Starting with a short stay a few times would be good practice and couldn't do any bad.

I agree, but I think that the case for one-way trips is sound enough that earlier round trips should not be considered an absolute requirement. I think though that if we develop advanced propulsion technologies that can allow us to get to Mars much faster than we can today that we will definitely see short stays that return to Earth before we see permanent settlements.





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SHWDate: Friday, 26.04.2013, 07:55 | Message # 36
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Quote (HarbingerDawn)
A well-planned Martian colony would be self-sufficient

I think, that major problem with Mars One, is that they are not going to create self-sufficient colony.
They plan to support it from the Earth.
Also, they don't ask any questions about radiation, energy sources and risks of interrupting this support.
So, it does not look like a serious project.
Probably, after 10 years, they will drop "Astronauts" somewhere in desert on Earth and will make a TV show.
I don't believe in this project.





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DisasterpieceDate: Friday, 26.04.2013, 22:03 | Message # 37
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Mars One has a good premise, but it doesn't seem to be well thought out. If you are going to colonize something, but don't even take into account how mentally fit someone has to be to go to another planet and colonize it, its not going to work.




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HarbingerDawnDate: Friday, 26.04.2013, 22:29 | Message # 38
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Quote (Disasterpiece)
don't even take into account how mentally fit someone has to be to go to another planet and colonize it, its not going to work.

They do take that into account, as I have said.





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kairunotabiDate: Saturday, 27.04.2013, 00:43 | Message # 39
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Quote (HarbingerDawn)
Mars One is not a scientific mission.


dry

They have purpose, its to study Mars itself to know if Life really begun there somewhere in the past. Why don't you read the website. Colonizing another world out of our own is another big leap for mankind and will also give boost to our advancement in astronomy







Edited by kairunotabi - Saturday, 27.04.2013, 00:46
 
HarbingerDawnDate: Saturday, 27.04.2013, 00:53 | Message # 40
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Quote (kairunotabi)
They have purpose, its to study Mars itself to know if Life really begun there somewhere in the past.


"...you make sure that humans don't go to places where there's the highest chance of finding life..."
"Science is, of course, not the main focus of what we are doing,"
- Bas Lansdorp, CEO of Mars One

I have been reading, and that is how I know that Mars One is not a scientific mission. It is a mission to settle humans on Mars.





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Edited by HarbingerDawn - Saturday, 27.04.2013, 00:54
 
kairunotabiDate: Saturday, 27.04.2013, 01:49 | Message # 41
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Still it will increase people's interest in aerospace programs




 
HarbingerDawnDate: Saturday, 27.04.2013, 02:15 | Message # 42
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When Mars One fails - especially if it gets to Mars and then fails - it could damage the public's perception of the Mars colonization movement and set back settlement efforts by many years, if not decades. Even if Mars One succeeded, which it almost certainly won't, it could still damage public perception of what spaceflight really is about and how exploring and settling other worlds really works through its ghastly over-commercialized "reality show". I just don't see any realistic scenario in which Mars One does more good than harm.




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robertinventorDate: Wednesday, 01.05.2013, 01:20 | Message # 43
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Hardly anyone ever points out that any manned mission to the surface of Mars violates the international Outer Space Treaty provisions for planetary protection, and the COSTAR guidelines which all Mars surface missions follow, to avoid contaminating the planet with Earth life.

They do that with good reason. Introduce life to Mars and you are now studying a planet that has been contaminated by modern Earth life, and it will be extremely hard to find out if it had life already before you got there, and whether or not you have made the existing life on Mars extinct by introducing modern micro-organisms from Earth.

If anyone thinks it is possible for humans to go to Mars without introducing new organisms to it, reflect that the skin flora alone of a human being has 1000 species in 19 phyla, some not well known yet, and over a trillion individual organisms. Just your skin. More and more species are turning out to be extremophiles, with hidden capabilities, don't need to live in extreme places at all, just capabilities that they have from the past. There is increasing modern evidence that some of these species could survive on some niches on Mars just as it is now without any terraforming of Mars and without any special adapatation of the organism, just transfer the organism to Mars and it could survive and colonize all available niches on the planet quite quickly. That is if the niches exist - but - e.g. thin salty films sub surface (which may well exist in places on Mars), or the water vapor that briefly condenses in evening and morning from the air on Mars - both been shown to be possible habitats or existing modern micro-organisms. And many organisms form spores that are amazingly resistant even to everything that mars can throw at them.

And - the COSPAR guidelines require that Mars be protected in the event of a hard landing. A hard landing on Mars of a human occupied spacecraft would deposit human bodies directly on the surface - immediate huge Mars contamination, hard to see how that could ever be reversed.

This is not just an issue for scientific exploration of Mars. It could also be a major issue for terraforming if that is ever decided to be a good thing to do. For instance one way to terraform Mars might involve use of photosynthesizing organisms to generate the oxygen. But what if you have already seeded Mars inadvertently with micro-organisms that just love oxygen, and will immediately eat it all up as soon as you create it? After a human visit there would be spores of such organisms just waiting to wake up when the conditions are right.

This could prevent a balanced atmosphere ever forming in the first place. Our planet needed a stage of just oxygen producing organisms without any animals to eat the oxygen for a long period of time to develop an oxygen rich atmosphere. After that many cycles and feedback mechanisms developed. On Mars this is a major challenge to try to do that - and to introduce aerobes right at the start before you even attempt it might make it impossible to do it at all.

I tried to point all this out on the Mars One forum some years ago, but the people there showed little understanding or interest in what I said so I gave up. The only thing that I said that I felt had some impact was when I mentioned that it would break current international legal treaty in the Outer Space Treaty.

But they didn't appreciate the underlying reason for the treaty, which is far more important than just understanding that it breaks the treaty. Like - okay - the law has to be changed so we can go there - so what - kind of attitude.

Antarctica is protected by the Antarctica treaty, and if a private company set up an expedition to colonize Antarctica and introduce life from other continents to do so, there would be an outcry.

We know so little about Mars, and so much of value to learn - to destroy all that knowledge for such trivial reasons is so sad.

Orbital colonies of Mars.would be fine, and are a perfect solution that should make everyone happy apart from the trivial thing of being able in person to "plant your feet on Mars" (and so contaminate it irretrievably. I tried to persuade them to turn it into an orbital colony of Mars. That would be fine. It's also much more interesting for the would be "colonists". But they just said - this means it is no longer the Mars One mission proile, and moved the thread to another forum about other topics not directly related to Mars One.

Most people have no idea quite how hostile the surface of Mars is. It is a near vacuum, the atmosphere would count as a laboratory vacuum on Earth. It is very cold, same average temperature as Antarctica but day to night swings far greater meaning it gets much colder than anywhere on Earth at night, and that's at the equator.

Dust storms that last for weeks on end that would blot out the sun.

Everything a dull red colour - the photos of Mars are adjusted to simulate Earth lighting to make it easier for geologists to interpret. To human vision everything would be a dull muddy red with hardly any variation in colour.

It would just be so depressing for the "colonists" on the surface. You can only get out of your hab if you go through several hours every day of putting on and taking off your spacesuit and making all the checks to make sure you do it safely (if not you will probably die of a simple mistake). When you get out, it is dull reddish grey barren landscape stretching out for miles in all directions. The first couple of times it would be interesting and exotic and after that - for non scientists just depressing.

Contrast life in orbit. You see the whole of Mars spread out below you, and as astronauts have found on the ISS, then life in orbit is interesting for humans. You would have gravity too because a Mars orbital colony would be spun up to achieve gravity.

You would be frequently in demand by scientists to drive their spacecraft over the surface of Mars, or pilot their gliders and balloons - the main reasons the existing spacecraft travel so slowly is because of the long round trip light speed delay when controlled from Earth, the other issues such as having enough energy available for journey on the surface could be solved easily if there was anyone there who could drive them in real time.

You have a bigger habitat for less cost, because it costs much less to send materials to Mars orbit than to the surface.

There is actually less delta v for Mars orbit than for a Moon landing, so supply of materials is much easier, a huge difference.

It's actually quite easy to return too. Not a huge expensive project way out of reach of a project like Mars One, to return a sick astronaut.

You still have resources you can utilize on the spot.

Having said that, I'd recommend a first colony mission to the poles of the Moon. That's because it is a lot closer to the Earth. On Mars say that your main heater packs in, or your oxygen supply is damaged, or any of a thousand small issues that could kill all the astronauts. Maybe you have a backup but it goes as well.

Then, it is at least six months travel time before you can get a replacement sent from Earth. And that's possible only every two years.

On the Moon then it is just a matter of days to get a replacement sent, and there is at least a chance you can cobble something together that will work at least until it arrives.

So - I say - go to the Moon first for colonies. For Mars - start with orbital missions - which need to be small groups of highly trained individuals at least able to operate the surface rovers by tele-operation from orbit, and include doctors, not just people able to do first aid, and well able to deal with highly technical scientific issues. So - needs at least some scientists, some astronauts. Can have people with no prior training at all as well, I really like that aspect of the Mars One mission. But on their own - with no scientists or trained pilots - or doctors etc? Many with little actual understanding of science or maths?

Not six months away on Mars. Not now. Not on their own. Just possibly on the Moon that might work. On Mars as part of a larger expedition with maybe at least a dozen or more most specialists, again could work a bit like the way that happens sometimes with the ISS. But you are talking about something as complex as the ISS, but so far from the Earth it requires six months travel time to get there at the best of times, and often much longer. And up to 44 minutes light speed delay just to communicate your problem to Earth and back again with no possibility of two way discussion.

If you have ever tried helping someone with computer problems via a telephone line - imagine doing something much more technical than that - and with a 40 minute delay to wait for them to say anything - and they are not highly trained and may not be able to articulate their problems well - that is what tech support from Earth of ordinary people even in a Mars orbit colony would be like. You must have specialists there with them, okay to have people who are artists and poets and composers etc not trained in computers or maths or science or piloting spaceships etc - but not on their own without any specialists with them - that is just a death sentence at the distance of Mars!.

Sorry this is a bit long. Actually I think I'll edit it and make it into a blog post somewhere :).

Their ideas are great. But if only they had a bit more appreciation of science and understanding of it, to match their enthusiasm and ideas - as most scientists have said when asked to comment on their plans.

For references and background you can start here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki....Mars.3F

Added (01.05.2013, 04:20)
---------------------------------------------
I've edited this a bit and made it into a quora post here
http://www.quora.com/Mars-On....share=1

 
HarbingerDawnDate: Wednesday, 01.05.2013, 01:47 | Message # 44
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Thus begins the Reds versus Greens debate... Also robertinventor, this may be the most epic first post of all time. I'll endeavor to read all of it and respond.

Quote (robertinventor)
the photos of Mars are adjusted to simulate Earth lighting to make it easier for geologists to interpret

Some are, but many are not, and most of the ones for press release are true color or close to it. And yes, mostly everything is shades of red or yellow.

Quote (robertinventor)
I tried to persuade them to turn it into an orbital colony of Mars. That would be fine. It's also much more interesting for the would be "colonists".

Orbital colonies make little sense as they could not be made self-sufficient. It makes even less sense to build Martian orbital colonies; if you're going to build a space habitat, why not build one near Earth? It would be much cheaper. The surface or near subsurface of Mars is the best place to establish a colony outside of Earth simply on account of the resources available at the location. But even the surface of the Moon would be a much more sensible location than orbital space.

And if I were a colonist I would prefer a surface colony to an orbital one.

Quote (robertinventor)
It would just be so depressing for the "colonists" on the surface. You can only get out of your hab if you go through several hours every day of putting on and taking off your spacesuit and making all the checks to make sure you do it safely

Some people would not find it depressing. Also, many strategies for Mars colonization involve domed habitats with tolerable pressure, so all you would need is an oxygen mask and perhaps warm clothes to go outside. And even "normal" habitats could use new pressure suit designs that can be easily put on and taken off and which do not rely on air for pressurization except in the helmet (designs of this nature already exist). And all that aside, at least they can go outside and walk around unlike in an orbital habitat, and can have a natural day/night cycle and weather. Someone could find an orbital colony at least as 'depressing' as a surface colony. Personally I'll take the surface any day.

Quote (robertinventor)
You have a bigger habitat for less cost, because it costs much less to send materials to Mars orbit than to the surface.

Then, it is at least six months travel time before you can get a replacement sent from Earth. And that's possible only every two years.

You seem to be assuming here that everything for a Mars colony has to come from Earth. This is not the case. Any decent colony would be self-sufficient and able to create almost anything it needs. Most Mars colony plans (with the notable exception of Mars One) account for this. Almost everything in the colony could be made with Martian resources.

Quote (robertinventor)
It's actually quite easy to return too. Not a huge expensive project way out of reach of a project like Mars One, to return a sick astronaut.

We're talking about colonies here. If the idea that even possibly losing an astronaut or a mission is absolutely unacceptable then we can never ever ever leave Earth. When you live and work on a frontier you live with increased risk. It is for the pioneers to accept the risk, not for the people back in the homeland to dictate what others should accept or not.

Quote (robertinventor)
And up to 44 minutes light speed delay just to communicate your problem to Earth and back again with no possibility of two way discussion.

Compared to weeks or months of delays that existed in past colonization efforts that's quite nice. Communication would essentially be limited to e-mails and other pre-recorded messages. So what? Anyone far from Earth should be able to solve their own problems, it's a requirement of being a pioneer.



I've got about twice as much that I'd still like to write, but that's as much as I can get down at the moment, so consider this part 1. Part 2 may or may not be forthcoming (probably not since I don't have the attention span to address all the things I'd like to).





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WatsisnameDate: Wednesday, 01.05.2013, 03:55 | Message # 45
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Oh boy, it's this topic again. biggrin I really dislike responding to things point by point, but when it's such a long post with multiple points being made it's really hard to reply in any other way. So I hope this is bearable.

Quote (robertinventor)
Hardly anyone ever points out that any manned mission to the surface of Mars violates the international Outer Space Treaty provisions for planetary protection, and the COSTAR guidelines which all Mars surface missions follow, to avoid contaminating the planet with Earth life.
They do that with good reason. Introduce life to Mars and you are now studying a planet that has been contaminated by modern Earth life, and it will be extremely hard to find out if it had life already before you got there, and whether or not you have made the existing life on Mars extinct by introducing modern micro-organisms from Earth.


This is true, and actually is something we are much more careful of nowadays than with the first planetary exploration missions. But even today, there is always a risk of contamination. We even had issues with this on Curiosity. It's simply too difficult to put something on the surface of another planet and have it be perfectly free of Earth-born microbes. So, unfortunate as it may be, we have to accept the fact that we might have already introduced life to Mars that would not have been there otherwise.

This does not at all mean we should not continue to make the best efforts to minimize contamination risk with future missions (that's like saying "oh, I already smoked a cigarette so I probably already got cancer, might as well keep smoking), but I just want to make it clear that we can't still call Mars perfectly pristine. There's also the non-biotic component of this; in that we've introduced volatile and toxic chemical species such as hydrazine. Yet nobody seems to care about that. (I don't really care myself, but I just find it interesting.)

Quote

And - the COSPAR guidelines require that Mars be protected in the event of a hard landing. A hard landing on Mars of a human occupied spacecraft would deposit human bodies directly on the surface - immediate huge Mars contamination, hard to see how that could ever be reversed.


Can you quantify 'huge'? Most of of the biological contamination would be solved relatively quickly just by virtue of the hostility of the Martian environment, but we can't know that some organisms/extremophiles would not survive. It is possible that they could even spread. But this is not fundamentally different than what we've already done to Mars, since we've already landed non-sterile equipment on the Martian surface.

Quote

This is not just an issue for scientific exploration of Mars.


An interesting statement; could you elaborate on it a bit? smile

Quote

It could also be a major issue for terraforming if that is ever decided to be a good thing to do. For instance one way to terraform Mars might involve use of photosynthesizing organisms to generate the oxygen. But what if you have already seeded Mars inadvertently with micro-organisms that just love oxygen, and will immediately eat it all up as soon as you create it? After a human visit there would be spores of such organisms just waiting to wake up when the conditions are right.


If we try to terraform Mars, I can pretty much guarantee that we will run into unforeseen problems. And you're right, this could be one of them (I don't see it as likely, however).

Here's a related question just to demonstrate this concept: How do we Make Mars' atmosphere breathable? "By adding photosynthetic life to create oxygen, of course." Well, if we did that, that life would die out before it could raise any appreciable oxygen, because atmospheric CO2 levels would drop until photosynthesis failed. We would need something to replenish CO2 but without using up the oxygen in the process, at least at first. We'd also need to raise the total atmospheric pressure.

In short, what I'm trying to say here is "Reality is More Complex", "Let's be Prepared for Anything, and also "Let's Take it One Step at a Time".

Quote

This could prevent a balanced atmosphere ever forming in the first place. Our planet needed a stage of just oxygen producing organisms without any animals to eat the oxygen for a long period of time to develop an oxygen rich atmosphere. After that many cycles and feedback mechanisms developed. On Mars this is a major challenge to try to do that - and to introduce aerobes right at the start before you even attempt it might make it impossible to do it at all.


Actually it took a very long time for oxygen levels to rise in Earth's atmosphere after photosynthesis developed. The reason is similar to the issue you raised -- not that there was life "eating" the oxygen, but rather there was a lot of iron and other oxidizable material on the early Earth. It took a long time for the Earth to, literally, rust, so that O2 could accumulate.

Quote

I tried to point all this out on the Mars One forum some years ago, but the people there showed little understanding or interest in what I said so I gave up. The only thing that I said that I felt had some impact was when I mentioned that it would break current international legal treaty in the Outer Space Treaty.


Well you raise a lot of valid points and they make for some very interesting discussion, perhaps the most fascinating discussion we've had on these forums for a while, but I think you're also very polarized on the issue. wink On the "Red vs. Green" spectrum, I used to consider myself very Red, but have become more moderate with time for a variety of reasons.

I do hope someday we will terraform Mars, but I also don't want to see other planets and pristine environments get lost just so we can expand. And I strongly believe we should not interfere at all with planets that are known to harbor life. Of course, the catch to that is that it's impossible to prove that there is not life on a planet. And from what we've learned with Astrobiology, life-bearing worlds might be exceedingly common yet not be easy to determine. So this is a very difficult and complex moral issue.

Sorry that this is all I have time to discuss at the moment, as with Harb I hope to have more to go on later if you like. Very good first post! smile







Edited by Watsisname - Wednesday, 01.05.2013, 04:00
 
Forum » SpaceEngine » Science and Astronomy Discussions » Mars One 2023 (The first permanent Human Settlement in Mars)
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