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Company Offers Tickets to Mars
#1
http://www.reuters.com/video/2013/03/27/...nel=118065

I didn't read this story too closely. It's about some Dutch company that is offering tickets to people who want to go to Mars.

The reason I didn't read it too carefully is because I saw that tickets were only "one-way".

I can't imagine how this works. You'd have to pay a huge amount of money. Probably well in excess of $1 million. And then what? You get to Mars. Take one last look around. Send a message home and then ... take off your helmet and die?

That just seems so bizarre to me.

Do you think there are really people in this world who:

1) have many millions

2) are willing to pay that for a trip to Mars (even though if you study the problem, it's just about impossible for anyone to travel to Mars (even if only one-way).

3) would be so happy just to set foot on Mars they would not care if they died shortly afterwards?


Hmm ... I read it more carefully and by "one-way", they don't mean you suicide after you get there. They mean to start a colony and people who go there will then live out their natural lives there.

And they don't need people to pay millions for a ticket cuz they will get funded by selling "reality TV" broadcasts of the whole deal.

Still, sending people to Mars and landing safely is just about impossible. And then, starting a colony and living there for any length of time is almost certainly impossible. For many reasons. Not the least of which is that they'd need a whole bunch of people to provide even minimal medical and dental care.

What happens when someone develops an impacted root and needs a root canal or else the pain will get so terrible they will actually kill themselves?

What happens when someone falls and breaks a bone?

There are many other things that can happen to people that will require trained doctors if they want to continue to live.

The question of drinking water is also almost an impossibility. Do you have any idea how much water 4 people will need to survive for say 20 years? Do you know how much it will weigh? Do you know how much it would cost to transport that water to Mars? And what about the Oxygen people will need to breathe in order to live?

The whole project just obviously seems doomed.

I suspect some very crafty and greedy people are behind this and they just want to collect a few billion from dummies who will pay for the cost of the trip and then they will split with the money and just leave the people who were going to travel there to die.

What a scam!
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#2
There is likely to be water on Mars in the form of ice.
The planet surface shows significant amounts of water erosion.

Once a source of ice is located, liquid water can be produced via solar heating.
From liquid water one can produce both hydrogen and oxygen, by applying energy.
But breathable air is 80% nitrogen and 20% oxygen, so finding a good source of nitrogen is the remaining challenge.

Inside underground caves and pressurized surface domes, it is possible to grow food and other plants.
This will become an additional source of oxygen.
Sewage will be used as fertilizer. Initial plant production will need to be hydroponic, but a supply of soil will develop over time.

As long as the basic items such as water and energy are available, the rest becomes manageable.
Never underestimate the power of human stupidity.
- Robert A. Heinlein
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#3
As velvetfog pointed out, lack of water and other essentials won't be a problem on Mars. The weakest link in an ambitious and historical mission such as this would be humans themselves. Even after the teams have completed their 8 years of training and know each others pecadillos, it only takes one moment of madness by one human to fuck the whole project up. We should colonise the moon first before going to Mars, to see how things go.

Personally I'd be willing to exchange longevity to be one of the first people on Mars, but only if I was much, much older. As for dying up there, so what? Our oceans and mountains are littered with the corpses of men and women who wanted to take the risk to explore, and see what's on the other side. If it weren't for these people who are willing to risk their life for adventure and discovery, where would we be now? I suspect we'd be living in mud huts with a vocabulary that consists of one word - ug.
"everyone wants to win but no one wants to drink a bucket of sj's piss" - bob5695
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#4
It seems like a cool idea to me, but I wouldn't want to go. I have things set up quite nicely here on Earth, and I don't feel the need to start over on a new planet.
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#5
The way things are going in this world, it may end up being the Chinese who colonize Mars.
Their rocket technology is coming along nicely, and China is becoming rich enough to undertake a major space exploration program within the next 50 years.
Never underestimate the power of human stupidity.
- Robert A. Heinlein
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#6
i'll wait until uranus is on the list of destinations... the inevitable puns are well worth the wait.
"Yeah. I understand the mechanics of it, shithead. I just don't understand how this is any less retarded than what I'm suggesting." - Kiley; Housebound.
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#7
(04-02-2013, 04:14 PM)velvetfog Wrote: The way things are going in this world, it may end up being the Chinese who colonize Mars.
Their rocket technology is coming along nicely, and China is becoming rich enough to undertake a major space exploration program within the next 50 years.

. . . and if anyone has the people to spare its them . . .
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#8
Since Mars isn't wrapped in a heart warming bubble like Earth the radiation levels of space and the sun will erode any suit they might be wearing. So it will be interesting to read about how they intend to over come this hurdle. Perhaps they are planning to build a "glass house"- like environment in certain areas on Mars, and railroads.

As for water, I still have a couple of pills dusting away in a closet from my service in the military that is able to cleanse the dirtiest of water. I can only imagine what they are capable of doing with an entire chem set.
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#9
it's a scam
consistency is the hobdob
of small minds[
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