Colonizing the Red Planet As humans we are very curious. We have explored and conquered all around Planet Earth. It’s only been a matter of time before we move onto bigger and better things. Mars may seem like it is too far away or too complicated to try and accomplish, but with the technology changing every day we are closer than ever to reach the red planet. Colonizing Mars can happen if we get water, learn how to grow food, obtain oxygen, and get the materials needed survive. Mars, otherwise know as the red planet has been shown to be a desert like world.
In pictures the planet is depicted as a dry, unlivable place. Yet, the red planet was not always a dry, dusty desert like planet. “NASA has also found evidence that Mars had rivers, lakes, and possibly even oceans long ago. ” (Water on the Red Planet). If there once was water then there is a very good possibility that there might be more hidden from us. Technology has increased fast in the past couple of years. Making research become fast and easier.
Finding water on Mars has always been a challenge, but as of last year NASA has found that Mars infact does have water. In 2015 September NASA announced the finding of what seem to be small amounts of liquid water, just below the surface of the planet. ” (McKim). It may be a little bit of water but a little is better than nothing. Not only have scientist found water underneath the surface but they have also discovered more water. Water can come in different forms including ice. Scientists have found many glaciers on Mars. Yes, the glaciers are smaller but they are all over the dusty planet, giving us enough water to start a colony on Mars.
These glaciers are made of salt water, making the water undrinkable but still usable (Water on the red planet). Since the water contains a significant amount of salt we can filter out the salt to make the water drinkable. Even if we cannot filter the water we could use the water to feed our plants. Food is amazing so it might be a good idea to have food on Mars. Not only is it amazing but it is vital for us to live. In order for us to live we will need to be able to plant vegetation. We need to make sure the soil is safe and would actually be able to have plants grow in it.
The soil on Mars contains most of the nutrients required for keeping a sustaining crops. Unlike Earth, Mars soil does not have as much nitrogen and potassium, but it does contain a great amount of macronutrients and micronutrients. Nitrogen in the air can be converted into ammonia, and when mixed with the macronutrients and micronutrients it can make excellent fertilizer (Hender). Since the soil on the planet is farmable we can plant many different plants to survive. Oxygen is needed for us to survive. Without it we would die. Mars atmosphere mainly contains Carbon Dioxide.
There could be different ways in order to try to convert the Carbon Dioxide. One way is through plants. To get oxygen onto the planet we can introduce very resistant microbes and eventually cacti to the martian soil. Then by heating the planet’s atmosphere it will free the liquid from the subsurface permafrost, making the plants able to produce oxygen through photosynthesis (Morais). Using plants is very resourceful. Not only does it give us food but they also give us oxygen, which is essential for the people who will live on Mars. Another way we could obtain oxygen is to compress the atmosphere.
This would not only give us oxygen but it can also give us water too. First we would compress the atmosphere, then we would condense the carbon dioxide. After condensing the carbon dioxide you would separate the carbon dioxide from the permanent gases. Finally you would concentrate and use the remaining oxygen and water (England). This may sound more work than it is worth but since we not only get oxygen out of compressing the atmosphere, we get water. Making it worth the effort. Materials such as cars, homes, and clothes are all thing that will help us out on Mars.
We can use natural resources from the planet to save on extra effort to try and bring materials up from Earth up to Mars. One way is using the sulfur on the planet to our advantage. Mars has been considered the sulfur-rich planet for quite some time. Sulfur concrete can be made from the sulfur on the planet and it is stronger than regular cement. There are tools on Earth that are cally made to produce sulfur cement. It is also completely recyclable (American Ceramic Society Bulletin). Houses can be made out of this sulfur concrete and can also help build other buildings, roads, and much more.
Also it will not be as costly as using regular cement. We still need to be able to travel o Mars. Scientists have already made rovers to navigate around the planet, using that same technology we could build a bigger type of vehicle to be able transport people. Rovers are already big enough to fit one average sized person. Scientists could make a rover that could fit four or five people. They already have the materials present to make them. With the rovers on Mars we can travel larger distances to and from our destinations.
Colonizing Mars is a possibility. We have the right technology to help fulfill our basic needs. As humans we have moved all around our own planet. Now with the correct technology we can finally move onto bigger and more challenging things. Though moving to Mars may not happen quite as soon as we would like it to, we can still count on it happening in the near future. Retrieving water, finding and growing food, getting oxygen, and getting materials will be no problem. Once we start there will be no stopping, because it’s in our nature.