Much like colonizing the New World, the next step for humans to explore is space. The world is close to becoming overpopulated and the best way to reduce it would be to expand to new planets such as Mars. If we don't invest in terraforming then the Earth's resources will eventually be used up and the humans left on the planet will suffer.
The very idea of terraforming a a single celestial body would send shivers down the spines of both the USSR and the USA , but having a whole other planet to exploit with most of the resources going directly the the govt.Like the Cold War both the two countries are still competing scientifically and technologically . Terraforming mars is easier than expected , for example hit the planet with a Pluto sized object and it will serve to increase the temperature by two ways. NO1 is that the ammonia on Pluto will add to the green house affect and melt more ice releasing yet more carbon dioxide , the Pluto sized object will break apart and then add to mar's mass increasing its gravity . This helps future human inhabitants .NO2 is the Pluto sized object is successful it will warm mars's core and therefor increase its magnetic field, a must have for any newly terraformed planet!
Exploring Mars is necessary for both long term survival of humanity, and gaining access to new resources. Doing so is likely to increase longevity, create new crops, create cheaper house construction, create cheaper farming mechanization. People on Earth will live longer, fatter, happier in a nicer greener house, and we'll have a backup for live in case things go south here. Here is how we can do it.
Spread a layer of nanoparticles designed to absorb sunlight more efficiently at the beginning of Martian south spring. Melt all the carbon dioxide there. Increase the Hellas Planitia pressure from 6 mBar to 100-200...
Plants can grow there without pressurised greenhouses.
People can walk around with oxygen thanks no pressure suits necessary, so long as right oxygen / nitrogen mix is used.
No need for pressurised living environment.
Formation of a liquid water lake on the bottom of the crater likely with the increase in temperatures this would cause.
If any life ever existed on Mars and survived this would help reignite it.
Makes reentry easier.
Decreases the radiation exposure a tenfold if not more...
Brings the cost of settling Mars an order of magnitude down.
Relatively low cost of settlement likely to bring more settlers and develop a new civilization.
Can be financed with reality TV, or can be financed by a group of millionaires wanting a really cool retirement palace, or a combination of the two... Further decreases in launch cost likely to make this feasible in 10-15 years.
Do a one way mission to Mars. The cost of sending pressurised greenhouses, living quarters pressure suits, radiation shielding... And everything else needed to keep astronauts alive an order of magnitude higher than option one. High risk. Not likely to make settlement of Mars any easier for the next group of guys coming in. If a bunch of these succeed we can do option 1 and then begin settling Mars for real.
Do a return voyage. Well this is what NASA wants. And why would they... This is how they get the most of your hard earned tax dollars out of your pocket... It’s an order of magnitude more expensive than even the option 2. Likely to happen by 2080 for about 5 trillion dollars by China, after a number of missed deadlines by NASA... And a decision to abandon the mission totally.
Keep sending cans to turn over rocks for a billion each, and hope you find a million year old bacteria in stasis... Even if there ever was life on Mars, DNA can’t live long enough to keep it in stasis for a million years... But NASA scientists have no problems spending your hard earned tax dollars to keep trying to find what is obviously not there... So for the fear of contamination no terraforming has been done to date... Who cares its your tax dollars they are getting paid with... Its not like they have something to lose...
The United States should be seeking to advance science in all forms regardless of present practicality. The advancement of science in general is money much better spent that wars of ideology and terraforming will be very useful in the very near future as well. The United States has announced space missions to mars so terraform science advancement would fit very well with that mission as well.
If we so change the earth then we could create one in where all life is increase in both quality and quantity therefore a boon to all life, including us. Also, many inhospitable areas and lack-luster locations could be revitalize into life-filled earthly luxuries. Also, the earth could resistant more negative modifications by human sources.
The people who criticize this topic don't realize that we are gonna have to do it whether we agree of it or not. You may say, we need to take care of our planet first. But that is just... Somewhat true. Yes we need to take care of Earth, but we also have to expand. Eventually, the world population will hit 10 billion. 10 billion is the uppermost limit that the Earth can hold, after that we will struggle to feed others. But if we terraform Mars and then eventually Venus, the uppermost population limit will be over 25 billion. We need more space for crops and cattle, not people. Plus, we will get the excitement of using spaceports.
We should absolutely be investing in terraforming. We may one day need to terraform the moon or Mars. Even if it's not a need, our instinct to explore will eventually drive us to want to colonize the moon or other planets. It could help us right here on Earth bringing life to the desert.
Why not are Earth is going to run out of resources and will we have to watch are selves suffer, but then again we could explore and find planets that we could make are home. When the Europeans force the indigenous people to change their ways, they didn't like it. But they didn't realize how much of a help they were(The Europeans could have been nicer).
I am not sure where the idea keeps coming up that somehow we can Terraform whole planets, e.G., Mars, like in the movie Total Recall or in the Star Trek movie The Wrath of Khan where using the "Genesis device" a barren planet was quickly terraformed.
I don’t want to break anyone’s bubble, but, it will be decades, maybe centuries, before we get a man on Mars, and hundreds of centuries, if ever, to Terraform Mars.
I began watching Star Trek in college in 1968. It was a wonderful show. But, I knew it was science fiction. I knew that man would never be able to invent any space ship with the capabilities of the starship USS Enterprise, which had 25 decks and hundreds of crew, and gravity and went up to 14 times the speed of light – wrap speed 14. I had already had physics classes in high school and knew that an object could not reach the speed of light according to Einstein; as a matter of fact, an object the size of the current space shuttle could not achieve one-half or one-tenth the speed of light. The Star Trek enterprise weighed 190,000 tons or 380,000,000 pounds, 380 million pounds. The USA’s heaviest rocket sent into space weighed about 45,000 pounds and it carried a cargo of about 5,512 pounds - the Ariane 5 ES launcher. It speed was about 35,000 miles per hour.
It will take millions of pounds of equipment and supplies to Terraform any planet. To put that into perspective, the International Space Stations weighs approximately 990,000 pounds. It is 220 miles above the earth. It took 40 flights to complete the Space Station. The first flight was on 11-20-1998 and the last flight was on 2-24-2011 or about 12 years. The total cost to date is about 150 billion.
Let’s say we decide to Terraform Mars. There are many problems with that. We have no spaceship that can get you to Mars even with just enough food and water for you to live, and definitely not with all the equipment you will need to Terraform. It might take 100 trips to Mars to get enough equipment there to live and Terraform. And, NASA hasn’t invented a puncture proof space suit to withstand the fine iron dust particles that form sharp triangle shapes and spike shape that will puncture you suit on Mars. NASA and other space agencies have been trying to design the puncture proof suit, unsuccessfully, for the past 50+ years. The space suit that we used on the moon, will not work on Mars because it is not puncture proof. And, each space suite we used on the moon cost 12 million dollars.
Right now, Terraforming only looks good on paper and is only science fiction.
Though I would support terraforming if it was feasible, we just don't have the technology in place yet to start investing in a project of this scale. The cost to transfer payloads into space is extremely high, and we lack the technology to even begin terraforming. A better use of resources right now would be to help take care of the planet we occupy now. Terraforming can wait until we have more of the base technologies in place, like cheaper space travel, plentiful non-polluting energy (fusion?), self-replicating robots, etc.
We have not achieved a sustainable balance with our own planet. Being stuck on our own planet forces us to have a measure of planetary respect. If we had two planets then one planet would be for the super rich leaders which will grow to loathe the lesser planet where the rest of us live. Terraformation would only serve to further class separate the people.
To Terraform a planet requires to things equipment and manpower to develop. The most significant of the required form of equipment it Cash. Not to mention the purpose for such an en-devour. Of course small scale terraforming occurs, in terms of surface mining and gardening etc, but to radically change a planet is not a possible undertaking, with the exception of nuclear irradiation of the planet. Cost and lack of technology are the killers of such an idea.