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Fraser
2005-Jul-19, 05:51 PM
SUMMARY: When humans first step onto the surface of Mars in the coming decades, they'll be like kids in a candy store; so many rocks to turn over or chip away at. Is that discoloured patch algae? A team of Spanish engineers are working on a Cyborg Astrobiologist that could help observe the landscape with a video camera, see what the astronauts see, and suggest places that might be interesting for further study. Larry Klaes reports on this interesting new technology, but he thinks robots could use a system like this even sooner.

View full article (http://www.universetoday.com/am/publish/cyborg_astrobiologist.html)

What do you think about this story? Post your comments below.

Guest_James
2005-Jul-19, 08:12 PM
To me, it is the challenge of doing the impossible which is the main motivation in human space exploration. All those major scientific discoveries along the way are just secondary to the challenge that is presented by human space exploration. Perhaps this cause is not the noblest and the ends don't justify the means, but I still would like to see this presidential challenge, of moon, mars and beyond happening.

For this sake, I'll adopt a new motive for:
A) Going to the moon: we can end our nation's, the USA's, shaky dependence upon forien oil supplies and advance the research of nuclear fusion by retrieving massive helium-3 supplies, nonetheless, for the entire world.
B) Going to mars: Does anybody have a valid reason for sending humans to mars yet, because it's totally doable. Just come up with some noble reasons for going there, any reason at all and we'll do it.
C) Going beyond: If it ever becomes necessary to do so we, space agencies all around the world, should go there!

Nothing is impossible with God!

piersdad
2005-Jul-19, 09:05 PM
The present mars rovers prove that a manned mission to mars is not really necessary.
With an original mission time expected of 3 months and now over a year.
Can you imagine telling some astronaught to extend his holiday for another 9 months while we fix a fuel sensor
As much as a manned mission would be spectacular i cant see it being safe and viable till we have a self sufficient space craft/space station that can exist permanently in space with out any earthly support.

I would think developing more autonomous robotic craft will have a lot more to benefit to humans that an astronaughts holiday

We could probably send 10 robots to different parts of mars for the cost of one manned mission

antoniseb
2005-Jul-19, 09:07 PM
Originally posted by piersdad@Jul 19 2005, 09:05 PM
We could probably send 10 robots to different parts of mars for the cost of one manned mission
Maybe a thousand.

piersdad
2005-Jul-19, 09:23 PM
Just think of the spin off from the robotic research would do for industry and the home.
Just about every thing we use today has some part of it based on space exploration technology developed and used in other things.

A lot of space funding is more about science and improving our living standards as well as possible space research.

I believe super glue was developed for the echo 1 satelite
what would i do with out my super glue?

Manchurian Taikonaut
2005-Jul-20, 07:45 AM
Originally posted by antoniseb+Jul 19 2005, 09:07 PM--></div><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (antoniseb @ Jul 19 2005, 09:07 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> <!--QuoteBegin-piersdad@Jul 19 2005, 09:05 PM
We could probably send 10 robots to different parts of mars for the cost of one manned mission
Maybe a thousand. [/b][/quote]
I&#39;m a big fan of unmanned spacecraft, robotic missions and space probes. The Cassini-Huygens mission, Voyager, ESA&#39;s Rosetta, JPL Mars-Rovers, the Russian Lunokhod Luna Rover, Mars Express, the Viking Landers.



Currently I support robotic missions to Mars, but I won&#39;t support this forever as robotic research great and makes wonderful discoveries but it also has dreadful limits. There is a day which we will have to learn to build a colony on the Moon or a space site on the Red Planet. I won&#39;t support robotic forever as computer explorers are not the answer to everything and an unmanned craft is too fundamentally stupid to sustain itself, NASA sent an unmanned craft look at the Mars Pole the craft had both English and Amercian measurements, a machine is simply on or off function and was unable to ask questions on its info or scrutinise between Amercian and English so it became another multi-million dollar wreckage on Mars, plus the fact that is takes a lot of humans to run those two small robots on Mars making some wonder just how robotic/computerized they are and even Steve Squyres, the lead scientist for the rovers admits that it takes a rover a day to do what a human can do in less than a minute.



NASA have done wonderful missions like the Voyager, Apollo Moon landing, Skylab and the Vikings to Mars. However today NASA is in a bit of trouble and hasn&#39;t put people in space since the Shuttle broke up as a flaming fireball, NASA needs Russia for getting Amercians to Space and the USA must try hard to get its manned space flights going again. Because of this Shuttle trouble I think unmanned robotics and computer craft are the best answer today for NASA, so the Spanish engineers working the Cyborg Astrobiologist have a great plan for the next while in space science. However the day will come that NASA will need to get people back into planetary science and exploration.

Eric Vaxxine
2005-Jul-20, 12:34 PM
I think that when a robot lands on a planet, it doesn&#39;t offer the same &#39;Land Claim&#39; as when a human being does. To look at most recent history, America, it was discovered by the Europeans, fought over and claimed.

I don&#39;t think we have lost this mentality yet. So a manned mission is vital to establish some kind of claim (which is the political and military history we carry right from our earliest days.)

America never settled our moon. Why? Surely it is logical to do moon, then Mars, then a few Saturn and Jovian moons ... and so on.

Science gives us the mineral and survival knowledge....roll on the robots.

antoniseb
2005-Jul-20, 12:55 PM
Originally posted by Eric Vaxxine@Jul 20 2005, 12:34 PM
I think that when a robot lands on a planet, it doesn&#39;t offer the same &#39;Land Claim&#39; as when a human being does. To look at most recent history, America, it was discovered by the Europeans, fought over and claimed.
I&#39;m not sure I follow what you&#39;re saying here. Do you believe that someone other than Europeans first sent robots to America, but did not follow up with human colonies, and so lost the claim to this new world? (I doubt that&#39;s what you&#39;re saying, but I can&#39;t figure out how else you&#39;re using this as a precident that robotic presence doesn&#39;t make the land claim).

Eric Vaxxine
2005-Jul-20, 03:02 PM
I don&#39;t mean to confuse.
I think we must remember that all this science is not for fun, not to please scientists. Scientists are generally funded to do work for others.

There&#39;s no way America will spend millions of robot dollars discovering Mars to hand it over to a colony of foot soldiers from another country if they were to land there. But if there was a Martian Pioneer there to defend the gates ... oh...OK...possibly a robotic one guess.

Eric Vaxxine
2005-Jul-20, 03:38 PM
Antoniseb
I just noticed how closely related we are as Universe Today joinees.

Manchurian Taikonaut
2005-Jul-21, 03:17 AM
Originally posted by antoniseb@Jul 20 2005, 12:55 PM

I&#39;m not sure I follow what you&#39;re saying here. Do you believe that someone other than Europeans first sent robots to America, but did not follow up with human colonies, and so lost the claim to this new world? (I doubt that&#39;s what you&#39;re saying, but I can&#39;t figure out how else you&#39;re using this as a precident that robotic presence doesn&#39;t make the land claim).
Vikings, Celts, Danes, and Chinese are thought to have found North Amercia on their explorations
however they never tired to really set foot on the place or fully colonise it

Talk to Americans, nobody in the general public really remembers the Russian Luna probes, the Mariner, the Lunokhod rover....
support for exploration comes from the public
what people remember is that makind set foot on the Moon, the world of Armstrong and Buzz and Glenn
not a memory of some Ranger probe or some Russian robot

this is why I say the day will come that we need to support manned exploration again soon

Nereid
2005-Jul-22, 08:00 PM
So let&#39;s unleash private enterprise, eh?

I mean, what better way to get huge public support for (government (agency) directed/driven/etc) space programs than to have thousands of folk fly to space, see the Earth as a fragile blue globe lost in the black immensity of space (or experience the delights of zero-g sex)?

Of course the science can be done far more cost-effectively by &#39;robots&#39;, so let&#39;s let the private sector handle getting people up there&#33;

Two caveats: just as everyone agreed on freezing territorial claims for Antartica (and the ocean floor beyond the EEZ), so let&#39;s work to get all &#39;extraterrestrial&#39; claims equally immersed in frozen He. Further, going to space is risky, and some folk will die. As long as they recognise the risks and freely accept them, let&#39;s keep the (legal) pirranahs at bay, shall we?