# Would You Live on Mars?

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[quote name='RoyalRyan' timestamp='1354738833' post='5007504']
Living in space if it was Suppose to happen God would of put man on other planets too.
[/quote]
By that logic, if we were supposed to eat, God would have put the food into our mouths.
If we were supposed to walk, God would move our legs for us.

The whole “God would have done it for us” argument is one of the worst rebuttals there is. Even if you believe in God it only proves my point: We obviously have the ability to do things without having some God do it for us.
#1: If you are so hung up pretending to know God’s plans, then move out of your home and discard your clothes, money, and personal belongings. God didn’t make your house, so it is obviously not His intention that you live in it.
#2: Even if there was a God that line of logic would only be used against you. God does not put food into your mouth for you. You have the ability to do it on your own, and it apparently is not against his will. God didn’t make your house. Humans have the ability to do that for themselves, and it is apparently not against his will. Likewise, we have the ability to travel to Mars, and who are [b][u][i]you[/i][/u][/b] to say if it is his will or not? As far as I am concerned, ignoring the obvious fact that we have certain physical and mental abilities as well as physical and mental limitations makes it [i]obvious[/i] that whatever we were not “meant” to do is defined by what we physically and mentally [i]can’t[/i] do. It’s [b]obvious[/b]. To ignore that is your way of showing mistrust in God’s plan. Or do you want to openly claim that God is imperfect?

“If God wanted us to…” is historically the worst argument that can be made against anything, after, “Because I said so.”

[quote name='samoth' timestamp='1354739932' post='5007510']
I wonder nobody sees the fallacy. The main selling point is that it's comparatively "cheap" due to that kind of lottery they do. Seeing how there is no trip home planned... tell me what does the price matter at all? For any "no way to return" trip which is not a con, they could ask any amount of money they want.

People would not mind giving [i]all [/i]their money, because there is no returning home, and the money is worth nothing on Mars.
[/quote]
I think you missed something. The astronauts not only do not pay anything, they get paid a salary during the 10 years of training, and it is likely to be quite hefty.
You can spend your money from Mars. When you want something you buy it and it will be sent on the next shuttle, as long as it is within reason as far as payload cargo goes.
Since it televised, they also have an obligation to actually send people to Mars. That will be televised as well.
Additionally, they will send multiple unmanned ships to Mars before the main launch. If they don’t do that, people will back out. If they do do it, it is obviously not a hoax.

[quote name='megabaki' timestamp='1354738409' post='5007501']
I think you should wait until these milestones have been met:
1. First person to land on Mars.
2. First person to return from Mars.
3. First person to die on Mars.
4. First person to commit suicide on Mars.
5. First person to commit murder on Mars.
Then, it will be like home sweet home.
[/quote]
If I wanted it to be like home, I would stay home.
Besides, part of the point is to be a part of history. That means not letting those milestones be given to other people.

L. Spiro Edited by L. Spiro

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There was a show that I never watched in England that sent people to the moon / some station, or at least convince them that they were on the moon / some station when they were actually still on land, when I read about the selection process involving reality TV I was a bit skeptical.

Eitherway I agree on what you said about being attached to one place, I liked to move a lot to the point where I have moved a total of 25 times in 10 years, sometimes overnight for lolz WITH 3 desktops. Sadly I stay put now because I have a cat but if I didnt have one I probably would be travelling or moving to Mars.

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[quote name='L. Spiro' timestamp='1354746815' post='5007550']Since it televised, they also have an obligation to actually send people to Mars. That will be televised as well.[/quote]You are of course entirely right, [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capricorn_One"]I forgot about that[/url].

[quote]Additionally, they will send multiple unmanned ships to Mars before the main launch. If they don’t do that, people will back out. If they do do it, it is obviously not a hoax.[/quote]Look, what you don't get is this: You pay them now, and maybe they do some desert reality show in 10 years, if they do it. That is, unless you wait for it to happen and the company goes into liquidation a day later. Incidentially the period of limitation is just about... wait... exactly 10 years.

What are you going to do if they don't select you to go to the desert in 10 years? What are you going to do if in 15 or 20 years you discover the whole show on TV was filmed in a studio, with drama students, or amateur actors? What are you going to do if there is no show at all and you find out the company doesn't exist any more?
Exactly. Nothing. You can go ahead and try to sue them, good luck. Where there is nothing, the King loses his rights.

[quote]No laws, no government, no taxes.[/quote]So go ahead and sue them if you aren't sent what you bought. Let's just hope you're not getting too annoying and too expensive, or someone might just turn off the oxygen tap. No laws, you know...

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[quote name='samoth' timestamp='1354748758' post='5007560']
Look, what you don't get is this: You pay them now
[/quote]
Again, for the third time, [b]the astronauts do not pay. The money does not come from the astronauts.[/b]
[b]The astronauts get paid[/b] and quite a hefty salary.

So, what if it does fizzle out? I take my $200,000-per-year salary and buy that condo I wanted in Tokyo. L. Spiro Edited by L. Spiro #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites ok... after all this huge discussion... how many posts!!! are we talking about something serious? or everyone is writing a piece of a scifi novel? #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites No, I wouldn't like to live on mars. But I wouldn't mind if almost everyone else went there #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites [quote name='L. Spiro' timestamp='1354746815' post='5007550'] If I wanted it to be like home, I would stay home. Besides, part of the point is to be a part of history. That means not letting those milestones be given to other people. L. Spiro [/quote] Yeah, I listed some honorable milestones there. You have this strange notion that if you need something, then there's going to be someone on Earth to Fedex you a care package every time you need it? Have money, will travel? That's not gonna help much if you get brain cancer or lose a leg. Contract a disease? Need a quick blood transfusion? Immediate medical attention will not come to you. Sorry, but I don't think Mars will be ready for civilians during your entire lifetime. Edited by megabaki #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites Why so much hostility? There wasn’t any before. [quote name='megabaki' timestamp='1354759247' post='5007600'] You have this strange notion that if you need something, then there's going to be someone on Earth to Fedex you a care package every time you need it? [/quote] You have a strange notion that I have a strange notion. I plan to buy nothing and I am aware of the dangers. I don’t get why that is hard to get. Who said I thought FedEx was going to ship me anything? Who said I thought I would get medical assistance beyond the basics? Why are you inferring so much? Why can’t you just understand that I know the situation and I accepted it and am ready to go? People who are willing to live in Mars are invariably misunderstanding the rough-and-tough conditions, the risks of death or serious irreparable damage, and their financial situations? It has nothing to do with the drive to explore, live in exotic new locations, go down in history, become a founding figure of a new culture, etc.? Gosh! News to me! [quote name='megabaki' timestamp='1354759247' post='5007600'] Sorry, but I don't think Mars will be ready for civilians during your entire lifetime. [/quote] Not unless non-civilians such as myself make it ready. L. Spiro Edited by L. Spiro #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites So, is it all about making history then? I mean, if you wanted, you could actually go to harsh places on Earth too. Now. I'm seriously thinking about living in Siberia for some time (maybe a year or something). I don't feel attached to my "home", actually I never did feel home any time in my life. The reason I'm not there yet, is that I have a girlfriend, and I'm too attached to her. Setting up a goal that distant (Mars) seems more like an escapement from solving problems here on Earth (maybe the problem is boredom, or not feeling attached to a place). In 10 or 20 years you'll get there. Problem solved. Okay, you can discover places, walk some places where never anybody walked. In a red desert that is.... a red desert. Making history? Well, everyone will know your name because, well...you were on Mars and... did something. That's something. For me, history making would be designing that spaceship that takes us there, but probably my name wouldn't get into the history books. Something that is so appealing to many, I don't get why. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites I would love to go. But I'm not sure if I have what it takes. Other than that: a) I'm a loner b) I already accept the fact that one day I will die. Maybe tomorrow (accident, perhaps?). c) As long as I have support and list of things to do (terraforming?), I'll be fine. Going to Mars is like going to war. You don't count of anything until you are home safely. Even then there are death of ex-soldier due to other thing unrelated to war after they return home. Just like soldier is worry of ambushes and snipers and IED, people knew there are danger all the time. But like winning a war, there will be first steps and there will be sacrifices. So, again, I would love to go. But I'm not sure I have what it takes. Short story, my country back then wanted to send someone to space. So there was a competition. This guy won it. The back up guy is an army person. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sheikh_Muszaphar_Shukor http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faiz_Khaleed <-- backup guy Everyone know of shuttle explosion. But that the risk that comes with it. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites [quote name='ManuelMarino' timestamp='1354751320' post='5007568'] ok... after all this huge discussion... how many posts!!! are we talking about something serious? or everyone is writing a piece of a scifi novel? [/quote] To a degree, while the company claims they want to accomplish it in ~11 years from now, but their's no guarantees it'll happen, check L. Spiro's first post. [quote name='samoth' timestamp='1354748758' post='5007560'] [quote name='L. Spiro' timestamp='1354746815' post='5007550']Since it televised, they also have an obligation to actually send people to Mars. That will be televised as well.[/quote] You are of course entirely right, [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capricorn_One"]I forgot about that[/url]. [/quote] yea, because that should be our sole reason to mistrust these people, because Hollywood conviced us that it'll be all fake in some B-rated 70's movie. [quote name='samoth' timestamp='1354748758' post='5007560'] [quote]No laws, no government, no taxes.[/quote]So go ahead and sue them if you aren't sent what you bought. Let's just hope you're not getting too annoying and too expensive, or someone might just turn off the oxygen tap. No laws, you know... [/quote] Dude, they are getting money by advertisements/investors, they are not making money from the people selected for training. [quote name='megabaki' timestamp='1354759247' post='5007600'] [quote name='L. Spiro' timestamp='1354746815' post='5007550'] If I wanted it to be like home, I would stay home. Besides, part of the point is to be a part of history. That means not letting those milestones be given to other people. L. Spiro [/quote] Yeah, I listed some honorable milestones there. You have this strange notion that if you need something, then there's going to be someone on Earth to Fedex you a care package every time you need it? Have money, will travel? That's not gonna help much if you get brain cancer or lose a leg. Contract a disease? Need a quick blood transfusion? Immediate medical attention will not come to you. Sorry, but I don't think Mars will be ready for civilians during your entire lifetime. And nobody is gonna fax you a nurse to wipe you arse when you get old and weak. [/quote] When did he ever say he'd get fedexed something?, perhaps you should double check the usernames of people posting, as you've clearly mixed something up. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites [quote name='slicer4ever' timestamp='1354774738' post='5007650']they are getting money by advertisements[/quote]Someone mentioned earlier that they would trust a government program over a dodgey TV-based venture in regards to safetey. However, being the cynic that I am, I would probably have more faith in something funded by corporate advertising budgets! Nations can deal with having heroes die for their country. It's damaging to the programme, but the nation can weather that kind of damage. On the other hand, imagine if the "Coke rocket" explodes while transmitting the final screams of reality TV participants, or the "Pepsi station" broadcasts asphyxiation or explosive decompression... They'd have just paid billions in order to be known as the snuff TV brand. Those advertisers are paying [b]because[/b] people will associate their brands with these events. If the events turn out to be horrible, they'll have caused irreparable harm to their brand, which they can't brush off like a nation can. Because of that, there's just as much (if not more) incentive to ensure the safety of the "astronauts" as in a NASA programme. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites [quote name='szecs' timestamp='1354771341' post='5007642'] So, is it all about making history then? [/quote] No but I think I have a way to explain it that can make sense to everyone. I am very happy working on game engines rather than the games themselves for a number of reasons: #1: I am creating a foundation off of which others build. #2: I am motivated by the fact that others will use my code to create their final products, and especially that my code will end up playing an important part in that final product even if no one else can appreciate what and how much that is. #3: By creating the engine, I have more freedom to explore new technology and new challenges to overcome. All of these motivational points can be found when thinking about moving to Mars to create a colony. I go there and start creating the foundation for the colony off which others will later build. My foundation will play an important part in the future development on Mars, and freedom to explore and discover, along with new challenges to overcome, are obviously par for the course. If I were going just to do research and then come back, I would honestly not be interested. Not only does that take away my #1 and #2, it takes away my #4 which does not apply to engine development: Visiting a place just makes me sad when I have to leave. Only by living there can I really be satisfied (assuming I have an interest in that place—many places I would prefer to just visit). I purposely missed my plane back to America when I visited Thailand because I didn’t want to return back to that same old routine. I wanted to completely refresh my life, and having not yet found a stable job it was a risky move. I am no stranger to taking life-altering risks (as another example, after leaving my first job in Japan finding a new job was not happening. I had enough for one more month of rent and a guaranteed offer in Hong Kong, yet I decided to take the risk and bet all or nothing that I would get a job in that last month), and I am aware of the risks involved in this undertaking. Then you have the added bonus that everyone dies, but not everyone ends up in history books. Everyone dies, but not everyone lives… …on Mars. In order to stay sane I have had to move to new countries several times, and moving to another planet would be the ultimate refresh. There are no places on this Earth better for me to go than Tokyo so I am pretty-much done refreshing my life as far as Earth goes. But if I am not limited to Earth, the pros for living on Mars far outweigh the cons from my point-of-view. L. Spiro Edited by L. Spiro #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites I just think this whole thing is too soon, too risky. NASA isn't sending people to Mars. Some Dutch company is. And their record for sending people/equipment to Mars is ... zero. You might not even survive the trip there. If you do, you'll have nightmares every night thinking you'll suffocate in your sleep from a lack of air. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites That is why they spend 10 years sending ships there. If at the end of it we are not convinced, we back out and take our$200,000-per-year salaries with us.
If they manage to send more than half of the ships there, we go along with the plan in faith, but still knowing the risks that we may die along the way.

In the end it is still our choices.

L. Spiro

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[quote name='Hodgman' timestamp='1354506827' post='5006492']
I'd move to one of these, after the asteroid-mining business booms so we can build them:
[url="http://www.theatlanticcities.com/design/2012/01/nasas-groovy-concept-art-orbiting-cities-future/1085/"]http://www.theatlant...es-future/1085/[/url]
[url="http://settlement.arc.nasa.gov/70sArt/art.html"]http://settlement.ar...70sArt/art.html[/url]

IMO, colonising other planets should come after that, as we'd be in a much better position to start a moon/Mars base once an orbital economy is up and running [img]http://public.gamedev.net//public/style_emoticons/default/wink.png[/img]
[/quote]

Are you're lying if you say that you wouldn't fight for the Duchy of Zeon and ride around in a DOM.

As far as being the first colonist of Mars.... nah. As far as living on Mars once it was habitable and pretty much like Earth (as far as technology and access), then hell yeah.

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Never ... I can only imagine the amount of homesickness I'd fell, and the worst thing, I'd know that there'd be nothing I could do to make it easier.

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[quote name='L. Spiro' timestamp='1354783803' post='5007682']
[quote name='szecs' timestamp='1354771341' post='5007642']
So, is it all about making history then?
[/quote]
No but I think I have a way to explain it that can make sense to everyone.

I am very happy working on game engines rather than the games themselves for a number of reasons:
#1: I am creating a foundation off of which others build.
#2: I am motivated by the fact that others will use my code to create their final products, and especially that my code will end up playing an important part in that final product even if no one else can appreciate what and how much that is.
#3: By creating the engine, I have more freedom to explore new technology and new challenges to overcome.

All of these motivational points can be found when thinking about moving to Mars to create a colony. I go there and start creating the foundation for the colony off which others will later build. My foundation will play an important part in the future development on Mars, and freedom to explore and discover, along with new challenges to overcome, are obviously par for the course.
If I were going just to do research and then come back, I would honestly not be interested. Not only does that take away my #1 and #2, it takes away my #4 which does not apply to engine development: Visiting a place just makes me sad when I have to leave. Only by living there can I really be satisfied (assuming I have an interest in that place—many places I would prefer to just visit).
I purposely missed my plane back to America when I visited Thailand because I didn’t want to return back to that same old routine. I wanted to completely refresh my life, and having not yet found a stable job it was a risky move. I am no stranger to taking life-altering risks (as another example, after leaving my first job in Japan finding a new job was not happening. I had enough for one more month of rent and a guaranteed offer in Hong Kong, yet I decided to take the risk and bet all or nothing that I would get a job in that last month), and I am aware of the risks involved in this undertaking.

Then you have the added bonus that everyone dies, but not everyone ends up in history books.
Everyone dies, but not everyone lives…

…on Mars.

In order to stay sane I have had to move to new countries several times, and moving to another planet would be the ultimate refresh. There are no places on this Earth better for me to go than Tokyo so I am pretty-much done refreshing my life as far as Earth goes. But if I am not limited to Earth, the pros for living on Mars far outweigh the cons from my point-of-view.

L. Spiro
[/quote]
I understand. I went to Finland just to be there. I wanted to be a lumberjack or deer shepherd. I could have easily find a well paid job in my home country, I didn't have anything in Finland (no friends, relatives). It didn't work out in Hungary, back to home again.

I think I understand you, I am a bit same, but I want to make history on Earth (adventure, epicness, all that shit) and I prefer the fantasy line to the sci-fi line. But I also feel that this ambition is not really a good thing. And I also think you haven't been to all places on Earth. Maybe you could try to live in a desert. Just to "practice". I'm serious. Why wait for some program? I think it should be doable to do it on your own, maybe you could find other people who would be interested. Edited by szecs

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L. Spiro, I wish you the best of luck. I'd love to see the endeavour succeed and it'd be cool to claim a brush with fame.

But I will be honest, because you seem to try to be for others,

[quote name='L. Spiro' timestamp='1354783803' post='5007682']
I didn’t want to return back to that same old routine.
...
In order to stay sane I have had to move to new countries several times,
[/quote]

This doesn't give me hope that you'd be selected. If you're the sort of person that gets tired of the project you're working on or the place you live in, how are you going to do in a place that will effectively limit your movements like a prison would with literally no hope of leaving? At least, find out if that trait is going to be something that works for you as a selling point or if will it work against you.

Even though you would be in an exciting place forging an unprecedented path for future generations, do you think you'd be able to handle an indefinite monotonous routine? The answer has to be, "Yes". Not, "I think so."

Again, I wish you luck and hope you succeed. Even if you're not one of the first 4, the first 50, or 1000 or getting selected at any point would still be historic and worth working towards.

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[quote name='szecs' timestamp='1354815399' post='5007823']
Maybe you could try to live in a desert. Just to "practice". I'm serious. Why wait for some program? I think it should be doable to do it on your own, maybe you could find other people who would be interested.
[/quote]
That is part of the training, actually. Every 2 years each team spends 3 months in the desert and uses a Mars suit to go outside of the camp. The point is of course to test how well you handle being isolated with a small group of people long-term, but just the fact that I would be exploring new territory for myself would be exciting too.

[quote name='kseh' timestamp='1354825296' post='5007863']
This doesn't give me hope that you'd be selected. If you're the sort of person that gets tired of the project you're working on or the place you live in, how are you going to do in a place that will effectively limit your movements like a prison would with literally no hope of leaving?
[/quote]
I thought about that too, but I am positive it would not be a problem. Basically I considered Tokyo to be my final destination and I have been fine with that. Compared to living on a new planet it was a fairly small change in my life, but I found ways to keep it fresh by doing many different things such as acting on Japanese TV etc.

But I still feel the same gravity, I still see the same moon, my diet only changed a little, etc.
I was fine with such a small change in my life as long as I thought there was nothing above it—no cooler and more exotic place to be.
Likewise I understand that Mars would be my final destination, but the amount of change would be so huge that it would satisfy me for life, and just as with Tokyo I would be happy to stay there as long as I never felt there was a cooler place to be. For me the only better place to be would be aboard a starship like in Star Trek, but that one I seriously doubt will happen in my time, so, just as I once considered Tokyo to be my final destination, I would consider Mars to be my final destination, and be fine with that.

L. Spiro

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@Spiro: Wouldn't living on a barren wasteland lose its luster after a few months? I mean there's nothing there. Sands and rocks. Unless you're the nature, rock-climbing type. I don't see Mars having a lot of interesting things to keep one busy or fascinated.

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Yeah, living on mars within the next few decades would probably be a lot more like living in a tent in a desert, then close to anything star trek.
Except the tent would likely have more conveniences, like (realtime) internet and access to health care. And breathable air outside.
And you won't have global months long dust storms that will kill you if you go outside, and in the meantime clogs all your equipment.

I think I would be really annoyed after a few weeks with all the red dust finding its way into every crevice... Not to mention the long term health risks of breathing it.
And also very much long to see something... thats not another red rock...

You have an urge to "keep things fresh" even in Tokyo. are you really sure you wont feel this urge after a few months where-ever you might be? Those urges are usually a lot more about your personality, then it has to do with any location.
And going to Mars severely limits your options of "keeping things fresh" in the future.

It's of course very admirable to be a pioneer, and I really believe that the way forward for humanity is out into space.
I'm a bit worried though that this Dutch company is rushing things, for the sake of fame and cash.
Sending a couple of people to a tent on Mars just because you can seems a bit cruel to me.

I too think that you should start with orbital bases, get some kind of economy running, find fuel to mine, and make it feasible to shuttle people back and forth before starting to do surface bases for humans.
All of that can be done with robotic drones, without having to risk human lives just because someone wants to be famous. Edited by Olof Hedman

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[font=lucida sans unicode,lucida grande,sans-serif]This is a very interesting topic, Spiro, even though I don't buy that "[i]worldwide lottery to select 40 people[/i]". It's only logical that people who are perfectly healthy and incredibly smart to be chosen first. It's easy to talk about building your own self-sufficient colony but it's harder to apply the knowledge needed to actually do it. Also, because supplies are not guaranteed, the people living inside the colony need to be extremely smart scientists to make their own materials, based on what they have available on the surface of Mars.

Build your own rocket? Com'on! NASA is still having trouble with their missiles, and they have an army or scientists. No high-speed Internet? That would not a problem for me; as long as there's still some sort of occasional communications means to Earth. I have on my hard drives thousands of books to keep me busy and will learn lots of new skills that would push away the boredom. I would also need my copy of Fallout 3 with me. After all, Mars is just a big really big wasteland. LoL!

Seriously now, a trip to Mars and the perspective of no return feel like a buzz killer to me. It would be a very dangerous thing to do... Imagine you and the other colonists would get really sick, like contracting an epidemic or something. There's no hospital around for millions of miles. What then? Also, provided that every member has a precise role in the community, if something happens to him/her, then everything goes to hell. For this very reason, I think it's important that the future colonists be trained in multiple fields of work.

[quote name='L. Spiro' timestamp='1354783803' post='5007682'][...]everyone dies, but not everyone ends up in history books. Everyone dies, but not everyone lives...[/quote]
Whether or not you're going, you would have to be completely sure that this is what you really want in life and that you're ready to support the consequences of your choice. If ending in history books is your dream, then that's fine. If it's being the first human to land on Mars, it's fine again. But going to Mars because "[i]not everyone lives[/i]" would be wrong. There are still lots of things to be done down here on Earth. You just don't know it yet.

I find the whole notion of starting up a civilization from scratch very interesting and it is something I've dreamed to do since I was a little boy, after reading Asimov's Foundation series. So, yeah, I'll definitely go! As for people who say "[i]why don't you go live in the desert for a while[/i]", seriously? How is that similar to building a colony? The complicated relationships between people, the high-tech equipment, the undergoing science experiments... you're missing the point people!

Anyway, here's a question for you, Spiro: [b]Why not go to the Moon first[/b], establish a base there and gathering whatever knowledge is needed for the future pioneers of space to go live on Mars later on? Again, great topic. Thanks for that! ;)[/font]

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[quote name='TheGuardian' timestamp='1354989536' post='5008544']
[font=lucida sans unicode,lucida grande,sans-serif]Build your own rocket? Com'on! NASA is still having trouble with their missiles, and they have an army or scientists.[/quote][/font]

Rocket building/design is no longer NASA's expertise and has not been for a long time. Most of the US's rocket design experience and knowledge is now in industry, particularly at aerospace giants like Boeing and Lockheed Martin (whence came ULA, the company that currently handles the Atlas and Delta rocket families) and smaller players like Orbital and SpaceX. In fact, the only currently flying (ie. in service) US rockets are now built and flown by private industry. Last time I looked at this, it was SpaceX that was to be the launch vehicle and possibly the spacecraft contractor for Mars One, assuming the Mars One actually ends up getting something off the ground.

[quote]Why not go to the Moon first, establish a base there and gathering whatever knowledge is needed for the future pioneers of space to go live on Mars later on?[/quote]

What knowledge exactly are you proposing to get from a lunar colony that would be applicable to a Martian colony? I doubt re-purposing hardware would be effective. Lunar and Martian colonies might have superficial similarities, but the actual engineering is likely to be very different, as Luna and Mars are rather different places. Martian hardware would have to be designed to cope with an atmosphere and the periodic dust storms that happen on that planet, for one thing, while lunar hardware would have to take into account the 15-day lunar night and the lack of a protective atmosphere and magnetic field. Edited by Oberon_Command

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[font=lucida sans unicode,lucida grande,sans-serif]We are talking about rockets capable of covering vast distances of space, not orbital rockets. I can't recal the last time when private contractors have sent a rocket to the Moon. Do you? [/font]

[font=lucida sans unicode,lucida grande,sans-serif]As for what we can learn about living on the Moon, well... living is space of course. The harsh conditions, the obstacles the colonists might face down there, how to create a long-term self-sustaining environment. Yes, I know we have the ISS, but I think that living on the surface of a planet/moon is going to be very different. Also, if missions to the Moon were successful, then we gain the confidence that we need; then we know we can do this, we are motivated towards embarking on what can be a one-way trip. [/font]

[font=lucida sans unicode,lucida grande,sans-serif]Anyway, the Moon is closer. Embarking head forward on a journey toward Mars feels to me a little bit like [url="http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0448134/"]Sunshine[/url] - a desparate attempt that has slim chances of success. I'm just saying; I would still go to the Mars if given the opportunity... [img]http://public.gamedev.net//public/style_emoticons/default/tongue.png[/img][/font]

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