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Thread: NASA's rover Curiosity lands on Mars [W:206]

  1. #161
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    re: NASA's rover Curiosity lands on Mars [W:206]

    Quote Originally Posted by Surtr View Post
    This isn't Buck Rodgers, just because a planet has a surface doesn't mean human beings can survive on it.

    We might not even exist in a million years. But yes, unless you can think of some other planets we can find that have similar conditions as Earth. Instead of hoping to ditch this planet, we should be looking for ways to un**** the mess we created in the first place.

    History has absolutely nothing to do with occupying another planet.
    I really don't get where you're coming from on this. It seems self evident to me that in 10,000 years, let alone a million years, we will have capabilities that would make us seem like gods today. Nanotech alone might well solve all the issues you mention and that's not even 100 years away.
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    re: NASA's rover Curiosity lands on Mars [W:206]

    Quote Originally Posted by teamosil View Post
    I really don't get where you're coming from on this. It seems self evident to me that in 10,000 years, let alone a million years, we will have capabilities that would make us seem like gods today. Nanotech alone might well solve all the issues you mention and that's not even 100 years away.
    Which still has nothing to do with colonizing another planet.
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    re: NASA's rover Curiosity lands on Mars [W:206]

    Quote Originally Posted by Surtr View Post
    Which still has nothing to do with colonizing another planet.
    Huh? You're saying, as I understand it, that we won't colonize Mars because of various technical complications like the lack of atmosphere and whatnot, right? I'm saying we could potentially solve all those technical problems in as little as 100 years, and almost certainly within 1,000.
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    re: NASA's rover Curiosity lands on Mars [W:206]

    Quote Originally Posted by teamosil View Post
    Huh? You're saying, as I understand it, that we won't colonize Mars because of various technical complications like the lack of atmosphere and whatnot, right? I'm saying we could potentially solve all those technical problems in as little as 100 years, and almost certainly within 1,000.
    Yeah, we can't change the gravity or atmosphere of an entire planet.
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    re: NASA's rover Curiosity lands on Mars [W:206]

    Quote Originally Posted by Surtr View Post
    Yeah, we can't change the gravity or atmosphere of an entire planet.
    The gravity there is high enough to sustain life. In fact, it seems that it won't even be that hard on the body to live in zero gravity. People have done it for years on end and the only side effects they've had have been pretty minor.

    The atmosphere, either we can terraform the planet or we can wear suits and live in shelters.

    Neither of those is a serious impediment on the thousands of year time scale.
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    re: NASA's rover Curiosity lands on Mars [W:206]

    Quote Originally Posted by teamosil View Post
    The gravity there is high enough to sustain life. In fact, it seems that it won't even be that hard on the body to live in zero gravity. People have done it for years on end and the only side effects they've had have been pretty minor.

    The atmosphere, either we can terraform the planet or we can wear suits and live in shelters.

    Neither of those is a serious impediment on the thousands of year time scale.
    The atmospheric pressure of Mars is about 600 Pascals. Earth's is 101,000, that's more than a significant difference. Extended periods of time in zero gravity do cause physical harm to the human body, especially the heart and lungs. As long as you get back to the atmospheric pressure and gravity of Earth, you'll be alright. Living in that low density your whole life will make your whole life a lot shorter. The temperature also ranges from 1 F to -225 F. You would freeze to death before winter even began, which also means that water and food crops are out of the question. Water is also very unstable on Mars due to the low density. It immediately turns to vapor and with the human body ranging from 50-65% water, what do you think is going to happen? Mars is completely uninhabitable, no scientific breakthrough will ever change that. Your only hope would be to live on a man-made structure, which could never possibly be a permanent solution.
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    re: NASA's rover Curiosity lands on Mars [W:206]

    Quote Originally Posted by Surtr View Post
    The atmospheric pressure of Mars is about 600 Pascals. Earth's is 101,000, that's more than a significant difference. Extended periods of time in zero gravity do cause physical harm to the human body, especially the heart and lungs. As long as you get back to the atmospheric pressure and gravity of Earth, you'll be alright. Living in that low density your whole life will make your whole life a lot shorter. The temperature also ranges from 1 F to -225 F. You would freeze to death before winter even began, which also means that water and food crops are out of the question. Water is also very unstable on Mars due to the low density. It immediately turns to vapor and with the human body ranging from 50-65% water, what do you think is going to happen? Mars is completely uninhabitable, no scientific breakthrough will ever change that. Your only hope would be to live on a man-made structure, which could never possibly be a permanent solution.
    You just aren't thinking big enough. For example Mars has way more than enough of all the elements required to make an atmosphere in it's soil. Nanomachines or even normal machines to extract it and convert it into atmosphere could certainly be done. Also, there are lots of plans out there for redirecting ice asteroids that contain useful elements into Mar's atmosphere where they would burn up in the atmosphere and help bolster it up. As the atmosphere thickens, the temperatures would go up. That process would be manageable with greenhouse gasses. With the right mix, you could make it earth temperature.

    There are two problems I am aware of with living in zero gravity. First, you lose bone density and muscle mass, so when you return to earth, that can be rough. Those problems can be remedied today to some extent with vigorous exercise and in the future with medications or nanomachines or who knows what else. Second, there are problems with people's eyes that they don't quite understand yet. People's vision gets worse the longer they stay on the space station. But, whatever that is, I'm sure it is solvable.

    The bigger problem is the solar radiation. Earth's magnetic field buffers us against it, but Mars' is much weaker. That one we don't know how to solve yet. Until we did, people would need to live primarily underground, or in shielded areas. Or at least be near enough to one at all times that they could get there during solar storms. But, like all engineering problems, I'm sure that is solvable eventually. We could genetically engineer ourselves to be more tolerant of the radiation, we could figure out how to spin up Mars' own magnetic sphere, we could build some kind of field of our own, we could come up with medical treatments that make it a non issue... Who knows.

    Anyways, what you're doing seems to me no different than somebody 1,000 years ago saying quite confidently that we could never fly because we're heavier than air. To somebody from just 1,000 years ago the people of today would appear to be gods with capabilities that simply defied any possible explanation. And science is not going at a constant pace, it is speeding up. It is inevitable that the people of 1,000 years from now will be able to do things far, far, beyond anything that seems possible today, and all the problems we've discussed so far already seem possible to solve in the foreseeable future. When you try to think about what we'll be capable of doing in 10,000 years, it is impossible to even imagine, but certainly simple hurdles like a thin atmosphere won't be an issue.

    But, even if you think science is basically just going to peter out in 20 years or so, by then we'll already have the scientific capability to live underground on Mars, and certainly people would eventually go ahead and do that. Why not?
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    re: NASA's rover Curiosity lands on Mars [W:206]



    Yeah Magnets!
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    re: NASA's rover Curiosity lands on Mars [W:206]

    Quote Originally Posted by Surtr View Post
    2.6 billion dollars is a lot of money. So is the 150 billion spent on the ISS, as well as the billions in shuttle maintenance, and the billions we'll need to build a new shuttle from scratch. This **** adds up significantly, especially when added to other programs that costs us billions of dollars every fiscal year. Opening up uninhabitable frontiers that have little to no probability of generating revenue at this time is beyond stupid. If you can't see that, then I don't know what else to tell you.
    The ISS was a stupid program and most proponents of space colonization and many within NASA vigorously fought for better options. The only way we will reduce the cost of space exploration aside from the development of new launch vehicles is the creation of orbital, lunar, and lagrangian infrastructure that will facilitate the on site development of critical materials like fuel. Hence Planetary Resources focus on creating a refueling and water electrolysis facility to sell fuel and massively reduce launch costs and allowing the continual refueling of ships that are stationed in orbit. We also do not need to build a new shuttle from scratch, and we will not be building a shuttle. Man rating a dragon capsule can likely be done relatively cheaply, and if we reduced our strictures and concerns could probably do a manned mission within this year. SLS is stupid, so I'll preempt you there.

    These frontiers are not uninhabitable, they have great probability of generating revenue, and $2.6 billion over 8-10 years is not a lot of money given the federal budget.

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    re: NASA's rover Curiosity lands on Mars [W:206]

    Quote Originally Posted by teamosil View Post
    You just aren't thinking big enough. For example Mars has way more than enough of all the elements required to make an atmosphere in it's soil. Nanomachines or even normal machines to extract it and convert it into atmosphere could certainly be done. Also, there are lots of plans out there for redirecting ice asteroids that contain useful elements into Mar's atmosphere where they would burn up in the atmosphere and help bolster it up. As the atmosphere thickens, the temperatures would go up. That process would be manageable with greenhouse gasses. With the right mix, you could make it earth temperature.

    There are two problems I am aware of with living in zero gravity. First, you lose bone density and muscle mass, so when you return to earth, that can be rough. Those problems can be remedied today to some extent with vigorous exercise and in the future with medications or nanomachines or who knows what else. Second, there are problems with people's eyes that they don't quite understand yet. People's vision gets worse the longer they stay on the space station. But, whatever that is, I'm sure it is solvable.

    The bigger problem is the solar radiation. Earth's magnetic field buffers us against it, but Mars' is much weaker. That one we don't know how to solve yet. Until we did, people would need to live primarily underground, or in shielded areas. Or at least be near enough to one at all times that they could get there during solar storms. But, like all engineering problems, I'm sure that is solvable eventually. We could genetically engineer ourselves to be more tolerant of the radiation, we could figure out how to spin up Mars' own magnetic sphere, we could build some kind of field of our own, we could come up with medical treatments that make it a non issue... Who knows.

    Anyways, what you're doing seems to me no different than somebody 1,000 years ago saying quite confidently that we could never fly because we're heavier than air. To somebody from just 1,000 years ago the people of today would appear to be gods with capabilities that simply defied any possible explanation. And science is not going at a constant pace, it is speeding up. It is inevitable that the people of 1,000 years from now will be able to do things far, far, beyond anything that seems possible today, and all the problems we've discussed so far already seem possible to solve in the foreseeable future. When you try to think about what we'll be capable of doing in 10,000 years, it is impossible to even imagine, but certainly simple hurdles like a thin atmosphere won't be an issue.

    But, even if you think science is basically just going to peter out in 20 years or so, by then we'll already have the scientific capability to live underground on Mars, and certainly people would eventually go ahead and do that. Why not?
    I appreciate your vigorous defense and line of thinking, a vein of thought and feeling that I certainly agree with. However do you really think that Mars is a better destination for colonization than the Lagrangian points, with the moon as a base to facilitate that?

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