Space Exploration and Possibility of Human Settlement on Mars
Space has always been a fascinating place to humans and space has shown possibilities of human accommodation. Humans have always lived on earth since time immemorial. However, scientific discoveries have proven that it is possible to live outside our planet. For instance, Mars has shown the highest prospect of accommodating human life. Although, it doesn’t come as close to supporting our life the way it is right now. The good news is that scientists have and are still developing strategies to make human settlement on mars possible. This might take a while, or might be accomplished in a very short time. Practically, Mars has been said to harbor microorganisms since the ancient Noachian era. Thus, the prospects of human settlement on the planet are not scientifically infeasible. The planet has the right supply of biomarker gases necessary for maintaining higher forms of life. Besides, its proximity to the Earth implies that the planet has sufficient supply of all vital parts of sunlight including ultraviolet and infrared lights.
Water on Mars
Water has been discovered on Mars in its various forms. NASA reported finding underground ice on the planet in November 2016 (McKay 208). However, scientific evidence shows that liquid water cannot exist on the surface of the planet; it is only found in low elevation areas (Brack 9). Even these deposits are only as large as a medium-sized lake on the Earth. Water may be transported to Mars and accompanied with requisite means of availing it in the liquid form. Since the common water can only be found in lowly-elevated parts of the planet, any human settlement would be situated there. Water may be transported through square compartments that maintain the substance in its solid state. Ice has a lower density, and square tanks would optimize the capacity of water transported to Mars for a specific amount of fuel by acquiring the maximum volume for the material used to manufacture them.
Temperature and Conditions on Mars
The present general warmth on the planet is below zero Celsius degrees even in the warmer seasons. However, recent events relating to volcanism have pushed the temperature within ranges suitable for human habitation. Temperatures are as high as -10 have been reported on most parts of Mars (Fairen et al. 964). Moreover, soil and rocks have shown traces of mineral components such as carbon, hydrogen, phosphorus, sulphur, and nitrogen. The axial tilt is similar to the Earth’s one; thus, the planet has similar seasons, although they are longer due to its relative distance from the Sun (Bell 315). Solar energy may be harnessed to initiate heating and fuels systems for burning food indoors. During the long winter season, humans may be required to wear thick clothes for outdoor activities. Food could be provided from the Earth in initial phases of the settlement. Mars also lacks means of enhancing sufficient CO2 recycling (McKay 206). To overcome this, plant forms of life that can thrive at the available temperatures and on the local supply of minerals could be installed near the site of the settlement.
Funding and Prospects of Human Settlement on Mars
Funding for this settlement model could be done by governments and interested groups concerned about the overpopulation of the Earth. These establishments would be engaged in the prospects of alternative settlement areas for the humankind. Funds may also be provided through relevant religious institutions to enhance the human domination of all possible parts of creation. If implemented, the settlement model would ease the strain on all the resources on the Earth and, essentially, lengthen the survival of human life. It would only require suitable admission criteria.
- Fairen, Alberto et al. “Searching for Life on Mars before it is too Late.” Astrobiology, vol. 17, no. 10, 2017, pp. 962-970.
- Bell, Jim. “Space Exploration: Life on Mars.” Nature, vol. 497, 2013, pp. 314-315.
- Brack, Andre. “Life on Mars: A Clue to Life on Earth?” Chemistry & Biology. vol. 4, no.1, 1997, pp. 9-12.
- McKay, Christopher. “Past, Present, and Future Life on Mars.” Journal for the American Society for Gravitational and Space Research, vol. 11, no. 2, 1998, pp. 205-214.