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  Exploration: Asteroids, Moon and Mars
  Why colonize Mars? Red Planet as humanity's refuge

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Author Topic:   Why colonize Mars? Red Planet as humanity's refuge
Tykeanaut
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Posts: 1791
From: Worcestershire, England, UK.
Registered: Apr 2008

posted 09-05-2013 01:45 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tykeanaut   Click Here to Email Tykeanaut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Sorry if this is naive but when the Earth naturally ceases to exist then I believe Mars will too? Unless we destroy ourselves first of course. So why do some think that a base on Mars will save the human race?

If it were a staging post to eventually travel out even further then perhaps yes, but I don't think we'll ever have that technology.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 28783
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 09-05-2013 01:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Ever is a very long time. Too long to probably say something won't ever happen.

But that aside, I don't think those who talk of Mars as a means of saving humanity are referring to the natural end of Earth (or more specifically, the evolution of our Sun).

Rather, they cite the threat from an extinction-level asteroid strike, rampant global warming, over-population or other natural or man-made catastrophe that would leave the planet inhabitable for humans.

But colonizing the Red Planet needn't be only about saving the species, much like going on a safari or exploring the rainforest needn't be grounded in environmental concerns. Going to Mars extends the human spirit and continues our natural desire (as a species, not necessarily individually) to push beyond our horizons.

cspg
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Posts: 4437
From: Geneva, Switzerland
Registered: May 2006

posted 09-05-2013 04:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Tykeanaut:
Sorry if this is naive but when the Earth naturally ceases to exist then I believe Mars will too?

Yes, but you'll have to wait 4-5 billion years for this to happen. Humans have been around for 50,000 years, if I recall correctly. We've got a long time to go!

quote:
Originally posted by Tykeanaut:
Unless we destroy ourselves first of course.

That's already taking place at an alarming rate but we keep our head in the sand- who cares what the planet will look like in 100-200 years? As the saying goes: "Don't Know What You Got (Till It's Gone)". Hopefully we'll wake up before then.

As for Mars as a refuge, since it's twice as small as Earth with no resources for us to live, who wants to go (except Buzz, of course)? or put differently who will go? The wealthy? The scientists?

Tykeanaut
Member

Posts: 1791
From: Worcestershire, England, UK.
Registered: Apr 2008

posted 09-06-2013 03:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tykeanaut   Click Here to Email Tykeanaut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I agree with you Robert that we should strive for manned exploration of Mars, but I do get the feeling that some perceive this as eventual nirvana to the inevitable.

gliderpilotuk
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Posts: 3131
From: London, UK
Registered: Feb 2002

posted 09-06-2013 07:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by cspg:
or put differently who will go? The wealthy? The scientists?

Send the politicians to test it out!

Tykeanaut
Member

Posts: 1791
From: Worcestershire, England, UK.
Registered: Apr 2008

posted 09-07-2013 06:12 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tykeanaut   Click Here to Email Tykeanaut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What a cracking idea! That would sort the problems out on two planets.

issman1
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Posts: 900
From: UK
Registered: Apr 2005

posted 09-07-2013 09:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for issman1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Is it "naive" of me to feel that sending humans to Mars in order to colonize the red planet is secondary to what the primary purpose should be: searching for extraterrestrial life?

Humanity has an ever increasing penchant for destructive behaviour and even having people in low earth orbit continuously since 31 October 2000 has not done anything to hitherto alter nor diminish that.

Were the human race to completely lose/surrender its basic capability of space travel then our fate on this third rock is not only sealed but well deserved - be it asteroid/comet impact, geomagnetic storm, plague or catastrophic global war.

All times are CT (US)

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