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Thread: Everything about Mars except colonisation and where there specific threads already co

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    Everything about Mars except colonisation and where there specific threads already co

    There has been a complaint that the thread on Mars colonisation is being swamped with other Mars topics.

    For that reason I am starting this thread to catch all the other Mars topics. I am kicking it off by including an article that highlights what China's future Mars plans are.

    http://www.marsdaily.com/m/reports/C...rover_999.html

    After successfully putting the "Jade Rabbit" lunar rover on the moon, Chinese space experts say the country's planned Mars vehicle will be larger, tougher and a better climber.

    On Tuesday, a real-sized model of the Mars rover is on display at the Airshow China 2014 in south China's Zhuhai City, offering a rare glimpse of the spacecraft still being designed.

    "Our current concept is that it will have six wheels, like Yutu (Jade Rabbit), but will be larger in size and better at crossing obstacles," says Jia Yang, who led the team that developed Yutu.
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    Article with picture of the rover.

    ETA: Nevermind. Selvaarchi's article has one.

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    Surprisingly in the Chinese press I find this "NASA releases simulate residence on Mars"

    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/ph..._133742239.htm

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    Surprisingly in the Chinese press I find this "NASA releases simulate residence on Mars"

    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/ph..._133742239.htm
    Pretty pictures, but zero informational content.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    Pretty pictures, but zero informational content.
    I think they are more then pretty pictures. If you look at the first photo, it has humans on earth constructing the structure. To me it must be a NASA project and I was hoping others in the forum could enlighten us of NASA's objectives.

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    And now you DO have a post about colonization, and post it in a thread specifically NOT about colonization.

    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    I think they are more then pretty pictures. If you look at the first photo, it has humans on earth constructing the structure. To me it must be a NASA project and I was hoping others in the forum could enlighten us of NASA's objectives.
    That is the HI-SEAS experiment dealing with human comfort.
    The purpose of the detailed research studies is to determine what is required to keep a space flight crew happy and healthy during an extended mission to Mars and while living on Mars.[4] Research into food, crew dynamics, behaviors, roles and performance, and other aspects of space flight and a mission on Mars itself is the primary focus.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    And now you DO have a post about colonization, and post it in a thread specifically NOT about colonization.


    That is the HI-SEAS experiment dealing with human comfort.
    Did we not agree, colonization is about staying permanently on a planet and having children etc. To me this is setting up a base. It might lead to colonization but it is a long way off. More like the scientific bases we have on the south Pole area here on earth.

    Thanks for the link to the HI-SEAS mission.

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    Did we not agree, colonization is about staying permanently on a planet and having children etc. To me this is setting up a base. It might lead to colonization but it is a long way off.
    I guess it could be a gray area. I look at it as the difference between surviving on Mars and sending equipment. But; that is only my opinion.

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    NASA has a plan to get humans to Mars in the 3030s.

    http://www.planetary.org/blogs/jason...lans-mars.html

    Beyond Earth orbit

    NASA's journey to Mars begins in the place humans have continually lived since 2000: the International Space Station. Here, in low-Earth orbit, the agency is testing technologies that will be used on future Mars missions. One such advancement is 3D printing, which allows astronauts to swap out heavy toolkits for containers of reusable powder. These printers create specialized, one-off tools that can be grinded back out of existence. During an Oct. 27 panel discussion at NASA Marshall, Niki Werkeiser, the project manager for the station's 3-D printer, said NASA intends to scale up the technology so that lunar and Martian regolith can be used for feedstock. This would drastically reduce the amount of mass that has to be carried to a planetary surface. "We're looking at large-scale printers to be able to print things such as small habitat structures, radiation shielding, storage shelters and landing pads," she said.

    Another low-Earth orbit technology demo happens next year, when private company Bigelow Aerospace is scheduled to connect an inflatable habitat to the station. Gerstenmaier said NASA will test how well the habitat shields occupants from radiation. Also in 2015, NASA astronaut Scott Kelly and cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko will spend a full year aboard ISS to further quantify how long-term weightlessness affects the human body.

    The real proving ground for Mars, though, is near the moon. It is there that NASA plans to spend a large part of the 20s, learning how to live and work in lunar Distant Retrograde Orbit, or DRO. Lunar DRO is a highly stable orbit where objects can remain steady for about a hundred years. At a June 19 briefing, Asteroid Redirect Mission Program Director Michelle Gates said NASA is currently interested in a lunar DRO with an altitude of about 75,000 kilometers. That's almost a fifth of the distance between the Earth and moon—a unique orbit unlike any humans have ever visited.

    For NASA, lunar DRO is intriguing for several reasons. First of all, it offers a low delta-v transfer capability, meaning it's a place where spacecraft can enter and exit the Earth-moon system without using a lot of propellant. NASA plans to establish a permanent habitat here to serve as a waypoint for Mars-bound missions.

    Secondly, establishing a presence in lunar DRO is a challenging but attainable milestone. It requires NASA to master deep space rendezvous and construction techniques. Astronauts living here would be far more independent than they are in low-Earth orbit—but close enough to home to bail out in an emergency. Such a quick return would come courtesy of NASA's new Orion capsule, designed with these scenarios in mind. Orion is more robust than any capsule operating today, said Mark Geyer, the vehicle's program manager, speaking to reporters at NASA Marshall. "When you're at the moon, you're somewhere between five and eleven days away from home," he said. "Orion is built to support the crew in their seats, in their suits, in a depressurized cabin, for up to six days. So it won't be a nice ride, but they'll be safe. That's the kind of stuff you have to think about when you're a long way from home."

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    NASA has a plan to get humans to Mars in the 3030s.
    By that time, they may be able to do it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    By that time, they may be able to do it.
    They'll buy tickets then, just like everyone else.
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    A 9 minute video by PBS NewsHour Report on Orion and NASA’s Mars Plans

    http://www.parabolicarc.com/2014/12/...as-mars-plans/

    NASA envisions a human presence on Mars in 20 years. But how will we get there? The Orion spacecraft, an unmanned capsule, will launch on its maiden voyage as an important test for future missions. Science correspondent Miles O’Brien reports on the engineering hurdles as well as the budgetary ones.

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    Video from Boeing (3 mins) about its and NASA's plans for humans to go to Mars.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technolog...n-to-Mars.html

    NASA is setting its eyes on the exploration of Mars, an over two year-long journey that will make history. Today's children will be the first explorers of our neighboring planet with help from Boeing. The current development of Boeing's advanced module technology will make possible a safe excursion for astronauts to Mars to discover ground humans have yet to see.

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    I have not seen these slides by Boeing for a return trip to Mars. Orion is only one part of the whole mission.

    sorry folks I got an error when I clicked on the link. I am instead putting in the link to the article in "The Space Review". The link is in the comments section from a "DougSpace" from 6 days ago. His comment - "Look at slide 6 of this Boeing presentation to see where the Orion Capsule fits into a more modern approach to sending humans to Mars:" Followed by the link.

    http://www.thespacereview.com/article/2659/1
    Last edited by selvaarchi; 2014-Dec-15 at 01:05 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    I have not seen these slides by Boeing for a return trip to Mars. Orion is only one part of the whole mission.

    sorry folks I got an error when I clicked on the link. I am instead putting in the link to the article in "The Space Review". The link is in the comments section from a "DougSpace" from 6 days ago. His comment - "Look at slide 6 of this Boeing presentation to see where the Orion Capsule fits into a more modern approach to sending humans to Mars:" Followed by the link.
    Here's the direct link.

    It's a good overview of the plan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    Here's the direct link.

    It's a good overview of the plan.
    Thanks for the help

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    The Space Review has an excellent article on two workshops held to discuss "Mars Affordability and Sustainability". They have put in a lot of effort to produce a road map to get the US to Mars this includes getting international partners involved in the missions.

    http://www.thespacereview.com/article/2698/1

    Shortly after the first in our series of Mars Affordability and Sustainability Community Workshops (AM I) adjourned in December 2013, planning began on successors to address topics that arose in the first workshop that deserved further consideration. As with the first workshop, the second (AM II) was invitation-only and co-sponsored by Explore Mars, Inc. and the American Astronautical Society. About sixty professionals from twenty institutions participated. The complete workshop reports from both AM I and AM II may be found at the Explore Mars website.

    Here we discuss the background and motivation for the workshop, as well as selected findings and recommendations from AM II.

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    Now another workshop on how to get the US to Mars. They envision a round trip without landing in 2033 and a landing by 2040. This too will depend on the US to give up the ISS by 2024 and the savings to be used for the Mars mission.

    My own view is unless the US invests more money into a Mars mission the date for a Mars mission will stay 20 years away for the US for a long time. In the meantime others will be spending the R&D for a Mars mission and reach there in 20 to 30 years from now.

    http://www.universetoday.com/119713/...3/#more-119713

    Start your clocks. If the Planetary Society gets its wish, humans will be lifting off for the Red Planet eighteen years from now. That’s the conclusion of 70 experts in various fields relating to human spaceflight convened by the well-known planetary science advocacy organization, as announced today. A full report describing their conclusions will be released later this year, but in the mean time, let’s take a look at some of the plan’s basic tenants:

    Constrain costs by limiting new technology development
    Need to “get on the road” by 2033
    An orbital mission first will provide valuable experience and opportunities for science
    NASA can afford the mission using funds currently devoted to the ISS
    Land a crew by the end of the 2030s
    Broad support expected for an orbit-first plan
    Need to establish means for industry and international partners to participate
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    If this technology takes off then manned Mars flights might just there in less then 20 years. I am referring to Ad Astra Rocket Company from Texas that is developing an engine that could take humans to the Red Planet in just 39 days and it has got funding from Nasa to accomplish the task.

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/h...w/46814800.cms

    "This is like no other rocket that you may have seen in the past. It is a plasma rocket. The Vasimr rocket is not used for launching things. It is used for things already there, which we call 'in space propulsion'," said Chang-Diaz, also a former astronaut, in a promotional video.

    The Vasimr engine works by heating plasma, an electrically charged gas, to extreme temperatures using radio waves. Strong magnetic fields then funnel this plasma out of the back of the engine.

    This, in turn, creates thrust, helping to propel the engine at extreme speeds, RT.com reported.

    Nasa liked what it saw this technology and offered a grant to the Ad Astra Rocket Company as part of its 12 Next Space Technologies for Exploration Partnerships (NextStep) programme.

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    If this technology takes off then manned Mars flights might just there in less then 20 years.
    Hardly.
    This technology has already had 20 years of history behind it, and Ad Astra's claim of 39 days to Mars already has 10 years behind it.
    Even for an ISS test, this is already 3 years behind schedule. Your article does not explain what the goal of this funding is, but it is most likely just to continue on the ISS booster plan.
    Even just to boost the ISS, the engine needs so much energy that it needs to be continually charged, and only fire in bursts. (using up that stored charge)
    For any serious spaceflight, this engine requires a huge amount of electricity. Most likely a quite sizable nuclear reactor. That's not going to happen anywhere in the near future.

    The 39 days to Mars will be just a News release quote for quite some time.

    It has been discussed in length here. Here are a few threads:
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...atus-on-VASIMR
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...he-cheap-route
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...ars-in-39-Days
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...ars-in-39-Days
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...-VASIMR-rocket
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...VASIMR-Rubbish

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    Hardly.
    This technology has already had 20 years of history behind it, and Ad Astra's claim of 39 days to Mars already has 10 years behind it.
    Even for an ISS test, this is already 3 years behind schedule. Your article does not explain what the goal of this funding is, but it is most likely just to continue on the ISS booster plan.
    Even just to boost the ISS, the engine needs so much energy that it needs to be continually charged, and only fire in bursts. (using up that stored charge)
    For any serious spaceflight, this engine requires a huge amount of electricity. Most likely a quite sizable nuclear reactor. That's not going to happen anywhere in the near future.

    The 39 days to Mars will be just a News release quote for quite some time.

    It has been discussed in length here. Here are a few threads:
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...atus-on-VASIMR
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...he-cheap-route
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...ars-in-39-Days
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...ars-in-39-Days
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...-VASIMR-rocket
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...VASIMR-Rubbish
    Thanks for the links. Never heard of it before but as you say it has been around a long time.

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    With all the workshops taking place on suggestions on how the US can get to Mars, NASA has it's own plans on how it will do it. One that is being discussed is partnering Russia in the undertaking.

    http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Ru...d_Map_999.html

    Russia and the United States will work together on a roadmap to send humans to Mars and the Moon, according to NASA Administrator Charles Bolden. The Russian Federal Space Agency Roscosmos and its US counterpart NASA will jointly hammer out a "road map" program on flights to Mars and the Moon, NASA Administrator Charles Bolden said on Saturday.

    Bolden, who is currently on a tour of Russia's Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, added that he had discussed joint efforts to send missions to the Red Planet with Roscosmos head Igor Komarov, including time frames and funding.

    "Our area of cooperation will be Mars. We are discussing how best to use the resources, the finance, we are setting time frames and distributing efforts in order to avoid duplication," Bolden said.

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    Thanks for the links. Never heard of it before but as you say it has been around a long time.
    Never heard of VASIMR? I am surprised since you are always on top of all the space flight news... I think they featured the technology on Discovery shows 10 years ago. It always appears in shows and articles about future space propulsion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brown Motie View Post
    Never heard of VASIMR? I am surprised since you are always on top of all the space flight news... I think they featured the technology on Discovery shows 10 years ago. It always appears in shows and articles about future space propulsion.
    It is only now we get technology shows like Discovery here in Malaysia. Even high bandwidth Internet access is only now improving in the areas away from major towns.

    But I look at it on the brighter note and say a small prayer of thanks for at least having it now
    Last edited by selvaarchi; 2015-Apr-12 at 09:48 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    The Space Review has an excellent article on two workshops held to discuss "Mars Affordability and Sustainability". They have put in a lot of effort to produce a road map to get the US to Mars this includes getting international partners involved in the missions.

    http://www.thespacereview.com/article/2698/1
    Even more breathtaking is the quote from here:
    http://www.thespacereview.com/article/2726/1

    "it’s possible to get humans to Mars orbit in 2033, and on the surface as soon as 2039, within NASA’s current budget, assuming increases for inflation"
    “There’s no ‘Kennedy moment’ involved, there’s no extraordinary demand for doubling of the NASA budget,” Nye said of the budget of the proposed plan.

    Stunning. Even Logsdon understood that this was not crazy.

    Not only that, but the photo in the article makes Nye look like Heywood Floyd at Clavius. Look how the room is laid out.

    Most interestingly, he has finally come around to supporting SLS:
    http://cosmoquest.org/forum/showthre...83#post2285183
    http://www.thespacereview.com/article/2755/1
    Last edited by publiusr; 2015-May-23 at 08:25 PM.

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    NASA's Administrator Charles Bolden is confident that NASA will land an astronaut on Mars in the 2030s.He said this at the "Humans to Mars Summit" at the George Washington University in Washington, D.C. Also at the summit a new report was released by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory detailing six building blocks needed to carry out a journey to Mars.

    The part of article that surprised me was, on how the U.S. space agency is also working with its European partners on ExoMars. I thought NASA pulled out and ESA is now working with Russia.

    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/20..._134212866.htm

    U.S. space agency NASA's Administrator Charles Bolden on Tuesday hailed progress on the manned Mars mission, saying that they are on track to reach the goal set by President Barack Obama five years ago of landing American astronauts on the Red Planet in the 2030s.

    "It is my firm belief that we are closer to getting there today than we've ever been before in the history of human civilization," Bolden told the Humans to Mars Summit at the George Washington University in Washington, D.C. "This plan is clear. This plan is affordable and this plan is sustainable."

    Bolden noted that there is "a new consensus that's emerging around this timetable, and around this goal."

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    The part of article that surprised me was, on how the U.S. space agency is also working with its European partners on ExoMars. I thought NASA pulled out and ESA is now working with Russia.
    I thought they did too, but after some searching, it seems as it's not completely pulled out.
    They did pull out of the 2016 mission, providing the launch vehicles, and providing one of two landers for the 2018 mission.
    Apparently after the restructuring, NASA is still working with ESA on the instrumentation of the 2018 mission.

    Along the way, I found a blog with a rundown on the near term Mars missions. I normally don't put much faith in blogs, but it does have a (seemingly) comprehensive list and details of current plans.

    In summary:


    Jan 2016 - (ExoMars) Europe Trace Gas Orbiter and Sciaparelli Technology Demonstrator Lander (fully funded and on track)ExoMars Jan 2016)


    Mar 2016 - NASA InSight Lander (Fully funded and on track)


    2018 - (ExoMars) European Rover and Russian Lander (Instrumentation still being decided)


    2021 - NASA icebreaker rover (followup of Pheoenix and Insight) 2021 (conceptual but likely, not formally proposed)


    2020 - China Rover (not likely to be approved in time for launch)


    ? India Orbiter and/or Lander (rumor)


    2022? NASA communication relay (in consideration but might be bumped because of the Europa mission)

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    The wiki site on the Exploration of Mars contains relevant discussion, plus tables of Future Missions and Proposals under Study.

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    Interestingly (or not) Zubrin, who is generally a ludicrously optimistic proponent1 of space colonization, seems to think VASIMR is badly oversold.

    VASIMR is not, of course, quite ready for use in crewed space flight. It's probably 10 years from being ready for flight in an uncrewed use and at least 20 from the sort of long-term use required for a 39-day crewed trip to Mars. Again, this falls into the area about why comparisons of space colonization, especially commercially-driven colonization, with US westward expansion, Age of Exploration sea voyages, or pioneering trans-oceanic flight are totally inappropriate.






    -------------------------

    1 I admit that I'm not much of a fan of Zubrin. The two books of his I've read seem to make optimistic assumptions about economics and somewhat dodgy ones about technology. Zubrin does have a good, breezy writing style, and his books may have increased interest in manned space flight, but, on the whole, I think they may have been misplaced with the LoC catalogue code of "TL" instead of PS370 or PZ1
    Last edited by swampyankee; 2015-May-09 at 12:18 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eclogite View Post
    The wiki site on the Exploration of Mars contains relevant discussion, plus tables of Future Missions and Proposals under Study.
    Yes, that was one of my sources too. But; I wanted something a little cleaner since Wiki also mixes in orbiters and concepts.

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