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Thread: How long until we have colonize Mars?

  1. #991
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    Does anyone think the superconducting magnetic loops of the article could be made self maintaining over long term?
    I’d say it should eventually be possible for a system that includes a magnetic loop to self repair/rebuild. Obviously it would have hardware dedicated to repair as well. My view is that one of the likely features of more advanced technology is that any moderate to large system will be self repairing as long as energy and (if needed) replacement raw material is available. Infrastructure will maintain itself, subject to command. Small items might just be easier to recycle and reprint.

    Something like this application, meant to last very long term would need a fair bit of redundancy and an ongoing source of raw material to repair bits removed by meteor strikes to last.

    I don’t think it will be that long before we start seeing early versions of self repair, maybe 50 years or so. By the time someone would consider a project like this, I’d expect a lot more development.

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  2. #992
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    A proposal from 2017 to put an artificial magnetic shield at Mars's L1 position to cover the entire planet.

    https://phys.org/news/2017-03-nasa-m...tmosphere.html

    https://www.hou.usra.edu/meetings/V2050/pdf/8250.pdf
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  3. #993
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    This guy says that you need 110 humans, minimum, to have a permanent colony on Mars. Hmmm...

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s415...ntent=deeplink
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  4. #994
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore View Post
    This guy says that you need 110 humans, minimum, to have a permanent colony on Mars. Hmmm...

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s415...ntent=deeplink
    Wasn't this the number, more or less, to populate a generation ship? Will have to look up that article. Seems that 110 is a magic number for minimum numbers of human colonists and crews.
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  5. #995
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore View Post
    Wasn't this the number, more or less, to populate a generation ship? Will have to look up that article. Seems that 110 is a magic number for minimum numbers of human colonists and crews.
    It was 98 people to get to Proxima Centauri. What math are they using to come up with these "minimum population" figures?
    https://forum.cosmoquest.org/showthr...eneration+ship
    Last edited by Roger E. Moore; 2020-Jun-20 at 02:40 PM.
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  6. #996
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore View Post
    It was 98 people to get to Proxima Centauri. What math are they using to come up with these "minimum population" figures?
    https://forum.cosmoquest.org/showthr...eneration+ship
    One report said that about 70 people crossing the Bering land bridge from Asia to North America could have colonized the Americas. This would be a minimum figure. So the 110 figure for colonizing Mars seems to be in good company.

    https://www.livescience.com/289-nort...concludes.html
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  7. #997
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore View Post
    This guy says that you need 110 humans, minimum, to have a permanent colony on Mars. Hmmm...

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s415...ntent=deeplink
    Assuming no following visitors or settlers. A populated Mars would probably not be a closed system.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  8. #998
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    "Elon Musk Says We Need to Live in Glass Domes Before We Can Terraform Mars"

    https://www.popularmechanics.com/spa...aforming-mars/

    Earlier this week, SpaceX founder Elon Musk explained on Twitter that in order to colonize Mars, we would have to support “life in glass domes at first” before we “eventually, terraformed [Mars] to support life, like Earth.”
    I am because we are
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  9. #999
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    Glass is probably not a good idea - too brittle. Some sort of layered, airtight polymer, preferably with a self-sealing capability of some sort. This sounds impossible, but I suspect we'll have this kind of smart material long before we are ready to colonise Mars.

  10. #1000
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    Quote Originally Posted by eburacum45 View Post
    Glass is probably not a good idea - too brittle. Some sort of layered, airtight polymer, preferably with a self-sealing capability of some sort. This sounds impossible, but I suspect we'll have this kind of smart material long before we are ready to colonise Mars.
    Glass is a lot more durable than polymers, especially in high-UV environments, and is much more easily made with available materials. It can easily be used in layered structures that provide failure tolerance. But the construction material is an irrelevant detail, his point was that humans will live in enclosed habitats long before we can terraform the place.

  11. #1001
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    The dome life could also reduce fire threats.
    I might have one near the entrance of lava tubes, with a Bigelow type jab jammed into the opening as an airlock.

    In the dome itself, only nitrogen. Oxygen for astronauts individually.
    You can have all electric earthmoving equipment with no fire danger, but with enough of an atmosphere to keep lubricants supple.

  12. #1002
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    Mars astronauts will need to be "conscientious" to a high degree, says a new study. They must want to do "the right thing".

    https://www.cnn.com/2020/11/24/world...rnd/index.html

    https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/full/.../ast.2019.2035
    Team Processes and Outcomes During the AMADEE-18 Mars Analog Mission
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  13. #1003
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    How high do you think Elon Musk's conscientiousness score is?
    "Occam" is the name of the alien race that will enslave us all eventually. And they've got razors for hands. I don't know if that's true but it seems like the simplest answer."

    Stephen Colbert.

  14. #1004
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    A new brine electrolysis sytem promises to produce fuel and oxygen from the salty water of Mars.

    https://phys.org/news/2020-11-tech-o...ars-salty.html
    Do good work. —Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom

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    Solar radiation can reach lethal levels for humans caught in the open on Mars, during Solar Proton Events.

    https://arxiv.org/abs/2012.00568

    Modeling Solar Proton Event-induced Martian Surface Radiation Dose

    Dimitra Atri, Caitlin MacArthur, Ian Dobbs-Dixon

    Solar Proton Events (SPEs) can cause abrupt and significant enhancements to the Martian surface radiation dose. Observations of the impact of SPEs on the Martian surface are available from satellites and surface detectors, but the data set is very limited in time, and the energy range is limited in scope, which makes it insufficient to estimate the impact of major events on the Martian surface. On the other hand, long-term data of SPEs impacting the Earth spanning a large energy range is widely available, and can be used to estimate the impact of major events on Mars on long timescales. Herein, we take major SPEs observed during the past several decades on Earth (1956 - 2014), along with PAMELA observations (2006 - 2014) and use the GEANT4 Monte Carlo code to calculate the Martian surface radiation dose. We study the contribution of proton fluence and spectral shape of events on the surface radiation dose and estimated the impact of possible major SPEs on the Martian surface in the future. These results have major implications for the planned human exploration of Mars. Overall we find that the radiation dose from extreme events can have a significant impact on astronaut health, and in rare, worst case scenarios, the estimated dose can even reach lethal levels.
    Do good work. —Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom

  16. #1006
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    Biological contamination of Mars from Earth astronauts is lessened, by this study, because briney water on the Martian surface is not habitable for Earth organisms.

    https://arxiv.org/abs/2012.00100

    Distribution and habitability of (meta)stable brines on present-day Mars

    Edgard G. Rivera-Valentín, Vincent F. Chevrier, Alejandro Soto, Germán Martínez

    Special Regions on Mars are defined as environments able to host liquid water that meets certain temperature and water activity requirements that allow known terrestrial organisms to replicate, and therefore could be habitable. Such regions would be a concern for planetary protection policies owing to the potential for forward contamination (biological contamination from Earth). Pure liquid water is unstable on the Martian surface, but brines may be present. Experimental work has shown that brines persist beyond their predicted stability region, leading to metastable liquids. Here we show that (meta)stable brines can form and persist from the equator to high latitudes on the surface of Mars for a few percent of the year for up to six consecutive hours, a broader range than previously thought. However, only the lowest eutectic solutions can form, leading to brines with temperatures of less than 225 K. Our results indicate that (meta)stable brines on the Martian surface and shallow subsurface (a few centimeters deep) are not habitable because their water activities and temperatures fall outside the known tolerances for terrestrial life. Furthermore, (meta)stable brines do not meet the Special Regions requirements, reducing the risk for forward contamination and easing threats related to the exploration of the Martian surface.
    Do good work. —Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom

  17. #1007
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    Self sustaining colony presumably means all women plus a sperm bank. This will be bad news to some Elons. But it is just logic.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
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  18. #1008
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    Elon "highly confident" SpaceX will send people to Mars in 2026, and actually hopes for 2024.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2020/12/01/elon...earchterm=musk

    I don't see it happening but I hope I'm wrong.

  19. #1009
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    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    Self sustaining colony presumably means all women plus a sperm bank. This will be bad news to some Elons. But it is just logic.
    ???
    Care to expand on this "logic"? Nobody's talking about sending half a breeding population and stopping there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cjameshuff View Post
    ???
    Care to expand on this "logic"? Nobody's talking about sending half a breeding population and stopping there.
    Well it was light hearted but if sustainable is taken further than survivable then living and breeding must be the long term goal. An all woman colony is indeed logical for resources optimisation. I noticed a side line about 200 colonists and have seen 200 before as a population with enough diversity to survive. In the old days you would assume about equal numbers paired off and rules about cousins and so on. But today we have DNA analysis and it would be relevant to any long term colony. If people are really serious about a Mars colony, (i think it is premature and more effort should be made to save Earth) and the technology exists to get there, then population optimisation is valid even if not traditional in Sci Fi. It was a poke at the whole idea, no offense intended.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  21. #1011
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    "The most habitable region for life on Mars would have been up to several miles below its surface, likely due to subsurface melting of thick ice sheets fueled by geothermal heat, a Rutgers-led study concludes."

    https://phys.org/news/2020-12-region...s-surface.html

    QUOTE: "Even if greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and water vapor are pumped into the early Martian atmosphere in computer simulations, climate models still struggle to support a long-term warm and wet Mars," said lead author Lujendra Ojha, an assistant professor in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences in the School of Arts and Sciences at Rutgers University-New Brunswick.
    Do good work. —Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom

  22. #1012
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    Farming on Mars using natural regolith will be very hard and will require additives.

    https://www.sciencenews.org/article/...-regolith-soil
    Do good work. —Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom

  23. #1013
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    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    Well it was light hearted but if sustainable is taken further than survivable then living and breeding must be the long term goal. An all woman colony is indeed logical for resources optimisation. I noticed a side line about 200 colonists and have seen 200 before as a population with enough diversity to survive. In the old days you would assume about equal numbers paired off and rules about cousins and so on. But today we have DNA analysis and it would be relevant to any long term colony. If people are really serious about a Mars colony, (i think it is premature and more effort should be made to save Earth) and the technology exists to get there, then population optimisation is valid even if not traditional in Sci Fi. It was a poke at the whole idea, no offense intended.
    A colony is not going to consist of 200 people dropped on Mars and isolated there with no means of expansion. This "population optimization" is not necessary or useful.

    And we will never be done "saving Earth". That argument's no more than an excuse for not doing anything.

  24. #1014
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjameshuff View Post
    A colony is not going to consist of 200 people dropped on Mars and isolated there with no means of expansion. This "population optimization" is not necessary or useful.

    And we will never be done "saving Earth". That argument's no more than an excuse for not doing anything.
    Well it could be said that colonising Mars is hubris on steroids while we turn Earth into Venus. I know space technology is exciting for engineers, but at the same time science and engineering have to take on “saving Earth”, . To take expansion seriously we have to take evolution seriously too. We are now a species in the midst of self engineered evolution and space humans need to different. That is the long term logical conclusion.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

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    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    Self sustaining colony presumably means all women plus a sperm bank. This will be bad news to some Elons. But it is just logic.

    A self sustaining society means more than just physical breeding capacity. The social order itself will also need to be fairly stable in a space colony. A radically gender-unbalanced situation would change in one generation; boys with no male role models around don't always grow up to be socially optimized individuals.

    And, as has already been pointed out, Mars will not be a closed system.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  26. #1016
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    A self sustaining society means more than just physical breeding capacity. The social order itself will also need to be fairly stable in a space colony. A radically gender-unbalanced situation would change in one generation; boys with no male role models around don't always grow up to be socially optimized individuals.

    And, as has already been pointed out, Mars will not be a closed system.
    No it seems Mars is hoped to be Kublai Khan’s pleasure dome surpassing Xanadu! If science is the excuse, noble science can be done better and more cheaply with machines. If our grandchildren can say Earth is now stabilised, Mars will still be there.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  27. #1017
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    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    If people are really serious about a Mars colony, (i think it is premature and more effort should be made to save Earth)
    The two goals are unrelated.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  28. #1018
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    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    Well it could be said that colonising Mars is hubris on steroids while we turn Earth into Venus.
    I didn’t realize we were turning Earth into Venus, but if we were, then it really would be vital to try to develop off world habitats given that the world would become utterly uninhabitable if it became like Venus. That would mean placing major resources and serious money towards the effort, not the little we are doing now.

    I know space technology is exciting for engineers, but at the same time science and engineering have to take on “saving Earth”, .
    Yes, and . . . ? As cjameshuff mentioned, that is just an excuse. Barring an absolutely massive diversion of world resources dwarfing current or planned space efforts, work on space technology isn’t going to have any significant negative effect on work on improving the Earth’s environment. On the other hand, it can have positive effects, and that is much of my interest.

    If we keep waiting until the Earth is a paradise to start moving out into and developing space, it will never happen. And if that is the case, eventually something will end civilization and humanity on Earth. It may be caused by humans, or it may be natural, but something, eventually, will happen if we just hunker down and do nothing. *That* is the long term logical conclusion.

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  29. #1019
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    The two goals are unrelated.
    Logically, that may be true but many of the same people advocating space colonization are also the people opposing efforts to maintain and improve conditions for people on Earth.

  30. #1020
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    Quote Originally Posted by swampyankee View Post
    Logically, that may be true but many of the same people advocating space colonization are also the people opposing efforts to maintain and improve conditions for people on Earth.
    What are you basing that claim on?

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

    I say there is an invisible elf in my backyard. How do you prove that I am wrong?

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