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View Full Version : Which nation is the most likely to visit Mars?



banquo's_bumble_puppy
2003-Oct-16, 01:52 PM
Now that China is in space; which nation do you think will attempt a manned mission to Mars; say within the next 20 years?

NASA Fan
2003-Oct-16, 02:15 PM
Wow, I had the first vote. I think that it will be a joint effort between multiple nations. They will have to draw straws to see who gets to step foot on the moon first, or go down the ladder or plank together and step on Mars together.

What will be the first words on the moon? If one of the guys I work with has anything to do about it, it will be "Girls rule and boys drool," now hear me out he is not some sort of weir sexist.

Amongs other things Jack gives talks to the girl scouts and part of his speech is to encourage them that they can do anything they want to do if they study hard enough, including becoming astronauts. In fact he tells them, they could become the first person on Mars. When they step on the moon, what will they say? Because they are young, and at that stage where they think that most boys are still yucky, to get a laugh Jack suggest the "girls rule..." phrase.

informant
2003-Oct-16, 02:24 PM
Now that China is in space; which nation do you think will attempt a manned mission to Mars; say within the next 20 years?
:o None of the above?

Mr. X
2003-Oct-16, 02:26 PM
Within the next 20 years?

Nobody... the way things are going every country has ensured they have enough trouble on this planet for the next 100 years, so nothing mars before that.

The only one I can picture going realtively soon is China, since they have nothing else to do right now, it boosts morale and everyone in China is happier for it.

Is it just me or does China's space program feel like "We're bored, there's nothing to do and we have lots of useless money, so we're either going to space or having money fights."

informant
2003-Oct-16, 02:35 PM
China going to Mars would make a lot of sense if they could terraform it quickly. With their overpopulation problems, and all. But of course they can't.

kucharek
2003-Oct-16, 02:45 PM
China going to Mars would make a lot of sense if they could terraform it quickly. With their overpopulation problems, and all. But of course they can't.
Colonization may be for escaping an overpopulated planet, but not for fighting overpopulation. How many kids per minute are currently born? Imagine the launch rate if you've to launch them in 20 years.

informant
2003-Oct-16, 03:05 PM
Hmm... :-? Yes, they'd have to develop some big ships (or many ships) to carry people over there fast enough to make a difference - and a means to get those big ships and their cargo into space. 20 years, you say?...

Eroica
2003-Oct-16, 03:49 PM
China's population grows by about 31,000 people per day! Imagine trying to fly 31,000 people to Mars 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year!

Mr. X
2003-Oct-16, 03:51 PM
China's population grows by about 31,000 people per day! Imagine trying to fly 31,000 people to Mars 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year!
Rofl. You could then walk (with magnetic boots) to mars on the ships. :D

NASA Fan
2003-Oct-16, 04:04 PM
China's population grows by about 31,000 people per day! Imagine trying to fly 31,000 people to Mars 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year!

I am curious, where did you get that number from? What is their death rate?

What are other large nations birth and death rate? I ask so that we can try to get a fair comparison, idea of what the numbers represent.

Colt
2003-Oct-16, 04:10 PM
Don't have time for a longer post now but just a nitpick...

"The United States will be the first to plant an American flag on Martian soil"

Of course the US would be the first to plant an American flag, why would anyone else want to? :P -Colt

Mr. X
2003-Oct-16, 04:25 PM
Of course the US would be the first to plant an American flag, why would anyone else want to? :P -Colt
:lol:

Maybe some guy on mars will say, "Hey, it's been 5,000 years we're on mars and the US still hasn't made it here. I mean Burkina Faso has an outpost here, New Ouagadougou. Isn't it time someone put an American flag here?"

Eroica
2003-Oct-16, 07:08 PM
China's population growth rate (estimated for 2002) (http://www.reference-guides.com/cia_world_factbook/China/People/Population_growth_rate/)

China's population (July 2002 estimate) (http://www.reference-guides.com/cia_world_factbook/China/People/Population/)

The number of Chinese grew by 58,000 a day -- or 40 people a minute --
in 1993 (http://www.tibet.ca/wtnarchive/1995/1/21_1.html)

Doodler
2003-Oct-16, 08:34 PM
I see a joint Russian/US mission personally. If the Chinese turn out to not be the adversary I think they could become, then their pragmatism would be an asset as well.

NASA seems to go the overengineering route, always needing to be the latest and greatest without through regard the implications of the experimental nature of new technologies. That may sound like a hell of an accusation, but lets take a long look at the record with the shuttle. Pushing the envelope is all well and good, but there is a point of diminishing gains where being too experimental means being less operational and safe.

Russia has the functionality of a time tested spacecraft design, but more often than not falls short economically. Also Russia seems as if they reached the Apollo plateau of having a great workhorse spacecraft, but then gave up on their own internal ideas for improvement chased America's tail to the point where they are now too far gone to make those ideas happen. Case and point, the Buran shuttle, the worst mistake Russia ever made because they dropped the idea for their own Spiral spaceplane which would have made for a great successor/compliment to the Soyuz.

China seems to be on track for a middle route between the two. I was reading today where some pundit wrote that China will never be competition for the US because their spacecraft is based on 40 year old methods we've long moved beyond. I found this ridiculously ignorant of the reality that a capsule based spacecraft is such that the basic technology doesn't need to be any better to still be completely workable in the modern era and totally blows by the technology inside the machine. I'm willing to bet a couple paychecks that the computer in the Shenjou spacecraft is pretty close to state of the industry in space rated computing. Its not like they went back to the old days of solid state technology. If anything, that machine is probably the benefactor of all the most current understanding of space operations, just remade in China's image. They don't need all the absolute latest gizmos and blinking lights, as it were, to be a competitor. They have an apparently solid workhorse spacecraft, a set plan of action, and the money to back it. To see China as anything other than a contender is naive.

Somewhere between American technical innovation and Russian mechanical reliability there is a balance that's going punch us into the next phase of space exploration. It will be interesting to see if the Chinese find it. That's what's going to put us on Mars.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Oct-17, 01:43 AM
You Americans are going to take us along, right? I mean, we can build some pretty useful stuff, throw in a bit of money and our astronauts already train with yours. Please? Pretty please?

NASA Fan
2003-Oct-17, 01:48 AM
Well you guys do a great job building robotic arms. My favorite tidbid about Canadarm2 is that the shoulder joint and the wrist joint are identical and interchangable allowing the arm to inchworm its way around the ISS.

Surely any expedition to Mars would require some sort of arm to pick up rocks and soil samples, and you just make that a conditional agreement. We will provide the arm, but we need to have a Candadian Astronaut along.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Oct-17, 01:52 AM
Works for me! Heck, the funding alone would probably be enough to get a Canadian on board.

Andromeda321
2003-Oct-17, 01:54 AM
Plus we accidentally spilled coffee on the English side of the instruction manual for the arm, leaving us with the French side. So you gotta help us out!!!!

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Oct-17, 01:55 AM
Coffee in microgravity? Hope it wasn't hot. :o

NASA Fan
2003-Oct-17, 02:19 AM
Well their drinks are in containers/bags where they have to sip their drink through a straw, and there is a clamp on it to avoid spills, so I would imagine that it would be hard for them to spill coffee...How about that one of the astronauts suffered from Space Motion Sicknes, and got sick over the English version.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Oct-17, 02:32 AM
Sounds more likely, but... yuk! Maybe he had to blow his nose and reached for the nearest paper.

NASA Fan
2003-Oct-17, 04:16 AM
LOL

Yes, as a matter of fact I am trying to up my post count by making fluff post.

R.A.F.
2003-Oct-17, 04:44 AM
Now that China is in space; which nation do you think will attempt a manned mission to Mars; say within the next 20 years?
:o None of the above?

I Have to agree with you, informant. I would be really surprised if we even made it back to the Moon within the next 20 years. That thought does not make me happy.

Kaptain K
2003-Oct-17, 05:00 AM
I expect the Chinese to be on the Moon by the end of the decade. 8) With any luck, they will decide to try to put a permanent colony there. It is more likely that they will try to go to Mars. I feel that this would be an error. The Moon is a better place from which to begin exploring the Solar System, once the required infrastructure is in place.

cyswxman
2003-Oct-17, 06:02 AM
I am inclined to think that it would have to be a multinational effort, and that is likely not going to happen. I seem to remember reading an article stating that NASA checked out the budgetary requirements for a manned mission to Mars back in the early 90s, and at that time it was determined to be close to 40 Billion dollars!! :o :o

It would have to be a multinational effort, but then you are quite likely to run into "national pride" issues, such as who gets to step out first, which flag gets planted first, etc...

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Oct-17, 09:24 PM
There'd be no argument from us as long as we get to go at all...

William_Thompson
2006-Jan-21, 09:25 PM
What? No Brazil?

mickal555
2006-Jan-22, 12:43 AM
William. Enough.

paulie jay
2006-Jan-22, 12:49 AM
William, do you remember that jkmccrann was banned for this?