Life on Mars

Manned missions to Mars are likely by the end of the decade. Here's what it'll take to make it a potential Earth 2.0.

Mars has always been an interesting target

Mars is roughly 140 million miles from Earth and temperatures reach -195 degrees Fahrenheit. So why is there such interest to settling the Red Planet? The U.S. and China — and private enterprises like SpaceX — plan to send manned missions to Mars within the next decade. But just getting there is only the first piece of settling earthlings on Mars. The other half is what to do when you get there. Astronauts have simulated conditions on Mars, living in domes near a Hawaiian volcano as part of the NASA-funded HI-SEAS project.

The safest way to have done it by far is to have sent along habitats

“First thing you would do, you know, once you've landed and, you know, sort of said, okay, I'm still alive, I'm still here in one piece. Probably the most efficient thing to do and the safest thing to do is to put your habitat underground. The UV Radiation from the sun. The Martian atmosphere doesn't block all of it. If you're outdoors too much unprotected, you can get pretty badly burnt. Just having things underground would protect you from things like meteorites,” Michael Shara, Astrophysics Curator - American Natural History Museum tells Brut. Shara says there are other ways to survive the harsh Martian atmosphere. 1 million people living on Mars would need 194,000 transport ships full of food for the first year alone according to the University of Central Florida. Settlers achieving food independence is a must before large scale immigration, Shara concludes.

The more learned about living on Mars, the more technologies that will be known about living on Mars

Despite the existential benefit of having a habitable place besides the Earth where humans can live. He also says he hopes life on Mars will help humanity answer the fundamental questions about our role in the universe. If something really catastrophic happens on Earth, really catastrophic that endangers the human race. Humanity does not have a plan B. We all live on one planet. The entire species is dependent on this one planet. Having a Plan B is always a good idea.