Mars, Asteroids & Interstellar Travel!

Discussion in 'Free Thoughts' started by darksidZz, Mar 21, 2007.

?

I think...

Poll closed Apr 10, 2007.
  1. Travel to Mars

    50.0%
  2. Don't travel to Mars

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. Mine asteroids

    50.0%
  4. Don't mine asteroids

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. Concentrate on R&D for interstellar travel

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  6. Ignore R&D for interstellar travel

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. darksidZz Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    4,923
    Forgive me friends for posting so much in the recent days, you see I've been filling in here at work since they fired the Assistant Manager. I enjoy reading the threads here and learning more about the myriad of things being discussed. Here are some questions I have for all of you concerning the subject of this post.

    1. Do you believe we should travel to Mars in the near future and what would be the benefits of doing so? Do they outweigh the costs?

    2. Do you think that we should attempt mining asteroids in the not-to-distant future or avoid them all-together? Is it to risky to try mining an extrasolar body?

    3. Do you think we should concentrate on R&D for interstellar travel or abandon this science for awhile? (until we sort out other problems) What would be the benefits of traveling between star systems and the downfalls?

    Please answer realistically, by that I mean don't give fanciful notions, instead use what you know science is capable of doing at this time and determine what might be gained by any of the above.

    PS I forgot to make the poll multiple choice so just select the most favorable option to you.
     
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  3. draqon Banned Banned

    Messages:
    35,006
    Mars is beautiful. It is our new life.
     
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  5. Absane Rocket Surgeon Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    8,989
    Screw the asteroids. Mars is much more appealing.
     
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  7. EndLightEnd This too shall pass. Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,301
    Should have made it multiple choice! We shouldnt limit ourselves to just one.
     
  8. orcot Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,488
    mine astroids. Building a stable space precense should be top priority besides that Paul W. Dixon guy did make worked my nerves a bid so I believe that moving things that could potentially blow the earth up should best not be on it. Besides the longer we stay away from Mars the more data we would have before we fuck things up over there
     
  9. Prince_James Plutarch (Mickey's Dog) Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    9,214
    There is no value in the asteroids. They have very little in usable materials.

    Mars, also, is of limited worth.
     
  10. draqon Banned Banned

    Messages:
    35,006
    :bawl:
     
  11. Killjoy Propelling The Farce!! Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,242
    Bugger manned space exploration.

    That's what robots are for.
     
  12. orcot Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,488

    I agree their are very little hookers and beer on any of them but they do have valueble recources that by the way are in some cases easier to reach then the moon. They have the volatiles for fuel production and ones reincforced have the dimensions to create artificial gravity while the slingshot could also be used to get a propelent less ride back home. (Or mars for that matter). The local materials could be harvested and procesed.
    The largest of the NEAR Earth that I know of should be the 32 km 1036 Ganymed and is a earth and Mars crosser while it's been made of relative strong materials like iron and magnesium it has a weight 3.3×10-16kg The empire state buildings weights only 0.3x10-9kg So it's not that ludicris to say You could actually build something there that rivals new york. (In best case)
     
  13. eburacum45 Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,297
    Really? How about carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, the basic building blockes of life; iron, silicon, aluminium, titanium, nickel for construction? Deuterium and helium3 for power? Every element available on Earth is likely to be be found in members of the Vesta family of asteroids. Everything of worth can be found in the asteroids.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asteroid_mining
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colonization_of_the_asteroids


    Robert Zubrin would disagree with you;
    http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~mfogg/zubrin.htm
    Mars has the same surface area as the land surface of Earth, so affords a similar amount of potential living space after terraformation (although a certain amount of the northern hemisphere would be lost to new seas).
     
  14. orcot Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,488
    the possibility to terraforming mars might eventually simply depend on the amount of nitrates in it's soil.

    However what do you think is more easier to construct a base on, Mars or on some near earth asteroid?
     
  15. eburacum45 Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,297
    I'd put bases on all the NEOs especially if there was any water on the object concerned.
     
  16. Stryder Keeper of "good" ideas. Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    13,104
    It's all very well saying that you'll mine particular ore's however the real question there would be "Why?". I mean lets say you do manage to mine vast quantities of Titanium, if it's on Mar's and the people need it on Earth it means a very costly process of getting between planets. (Delivery costs would obviously outway mining costs)

    Can you image the Post and Packing on Ebay for an Item from Mars?
    The item might only be worth a small amount but the P&P would make it one of those items that nobody buys.

    Although saying that I wouldn't rule out the usage of Large Robotic Tunnellers similar to what was used in the Channel Tunnel, not for mining but for complex building.
     
  17. Xylene Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,398
    Considering that all the easily-worked mineral deposits are near to being used up, and Antarctica is the only choice for new unexploited ground on Earth, perhaps we should go to the asteroids and start digging there. I daresay we have the technology to reach them in a year or so by Hohmann orbit. Consider how many billions of tons of minerals are out there--you could fulfill Human needs for at least hundreds of years, and clean up (i.e. make safer) the intra-system spaceways. At least then, the deeper system could be reached in the latter half of the century to explore the gas giants.
     
  18. valich Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,501
    You forgot to use the multiple answer option:

    All of the above. Should we:
    Travel to Mars? Yes
    Don't travel to Mars? Yes
    Mine asteroids? Yes
    Don't mine asteroids? Yes
    Concentrate on R&D for interstellar travel? Yes
    Ignore R&D for interstellar travel? Yes


    Aren't I the most agreeable person you've ever met?:worship:
     
  19. eburacum45 Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,297
    Almost all of the materials mined on NEOs and other asteroids would be destined for use in space; it is only worth doing as part of a concerted effort to colonise and exploit the solar system as a whole.

    Only a few resources would be valuable enough to send down to the Earth's surface; however aerobraking is relatively cheap, so some commodities may well find their way down here.
     
  20. Killjoy Propelling The Farce!! Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,242
    True, but if the trajectory of the cargo is off, it's gonna leave a hell of a mark somewhere - presuming it's a sufficient mass to so much as bother with the expense of hunting it down & "rooting it out" in the first place, let alone runing the risk of trasporting it back by basically flinging it at Earth and hoping everybody did their calculations in metirc units, not SAE.
     
  21. jumpercable 6EQUJ5 'WOW' Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    305
    Mar's will be the next place that Earthlings will want to colonize. My bet is that won't happen for at least another 100 years or so, even if we're lucky enough to land and establish a scientific base there. Next question. Where's the atmosphere and air going to come from?
     
  22. orcot Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,488
    The amount of nitrogen locked in the soil of mars is estimated to be around 300 mbars. Altough it's unclear on how much can be released (perhaps 10%). The amount of Co2 should be between 30mbar and 300mbar (closer to the first).

    So a 40mbar Co2+6mbar current Co2 + 30mbar N2 atmosphere Give a initial atmosphere 76mbar atmosphere. That can be obtained by mirrors.

    This would change the main temp from -54 to -46°C the polar temp from -127to -101°C and he max temp from -32 to -24°C. adding 5 microbars of CFC would place the global temp to -6°C and the max trop to +20°C
    Give our take

    Enough for the lowest lifeforms (note this is mainly a heat problem their are lifeforms that can still survive on 0.1 mbar Co2 and 10mbar N2)

    source
     
  23. jumpercable 6EQUJ5 'WOW' Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    305
    I guess you should consider getting into the big mirror making industry as a future career move. Be sure and drop off your business card to NASA.
     

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