Naked Science Forum

On the Lighter Side => New Theories => Topic started by: abrooks051 on 27/07/2019 12:57:34

Title: Why the heck are we going to Mars?
Post by: abrooks051 on 27/07/2019 12:57:34
Consider.
Fifty years ago we set foot on the Moon and then, nothing. We set up a "Space Station", when we already had an orbiting "space station" three days away.
We will spend enormous amounts of money and endanger many lives to go to Mars when anything we are going to do on Mars could be tried on the Moon. Go to the Moon, set up underground areas in the caves, try all the things that you may use on Mars there first. The Moon is closer so should there be a problem at least attempts could be made to rescue the astronauts, on Mars they are essentially dead men/women walking.
Just my two cents worth.
Title: Re: Why the heck are we going to Mars?
Post by: Yahya A.Sharif on 27/07/2019 14:09:12
Why people travel abroad?
They have scientific curiosity to find new ground structure, new atmosphere, etc
They don't know they will find nothing until they search there.
Title: Re: Why the heck are we going to Mars?
Post by: alancalverd on 27/07/2019 14:44:46
on Mars they are essentially dead men/women walking.
We all are, anyway. It's just a matter of time.

I've always favored a one-way expedition to Mars, manned by pensioners like me. Instead of lugging a return vehicle and all the problems of launching it, I'd take ten years' supply of food, and call for a resupply cargo ship if I survive the first five years.

Why do I want to go? To find out what's there and what used to be there.

When you are dead, you are dead, and it really doesn't matter where you are at the time. I'd rather die doing something interesting and difficult than suffer daytime television in an old folks' home, or endure the Liverpool Pathway adminstered by self-styled "carers".
Title: Re: Why the heck are we going to Mars?
Post by: evan_au on 27/07/2019 15:52:49
I heard recently (in one of the many recounts of Apollo 11) that when the Russians were ahead of the USA in space technology (ie 1958-1962 or so), the Americans panicked.

One of the people they asked was Werner Von Braun, a captured German rocket scientist.

He observed that there was no way the USA could catch Russia in the short term, so the only way they could catch up would be to pick a goal that was far ahead of the capabilities of either side.

So when Kennedy said "We choose to go to the Moon... not because they are easy, but because they are hard..", he really meant "we picked something hard, so the Russians wouldn't automatically get there first".

A similar thing may be playing out in space now - China is definitely heading towards the Moon, and Donald Trump wants to beat them; so he advanced NASA's Moon-landing schedule to 2024.

But there will be an equally aggressive race to send a human past Mars, and to land on Mars.

It's as much about personal and national (and now, corporate) pride as anything scientific or technical.
Title: Re: Why the heck are we going to Mars?
Post by: abrooks051 on 27/07/2019 17:57:27
Alancalverd.
Always like your feedback. (If my wife wouldn't be really PO'd at me, I would join you.)
Evan_au.
Good points. It just makes me a little angry to watch science shows where they are living in eco-huts and wandering around in spacesuits when they could be doing the same and learning a great deal if they did it on the Moon. Technology, now, would allow for mining, processing and manufacturing right on the Moon and supply ships are only a "stones throw" away.
Yahya A.Sharif.
Not to get political but I would rather go to the Moon or Mars than travel on the Planet Earth at this time.

Thanks to all for the feedback.
Title: Re: Why the heck are we going to Mars?
Post by: Bored chemist on 27/07/2019 18:51:58
they could be doing the same and learning a great deal if they did it on the Moon.
Are you offering to pay their travel costs?
Title: Re: Why the heck are we going to Mars?
Post by: abrooks051 on 27/07/2019 20:11:19
Bored chemist.
Sure, give me a minute and I'll get out my "never runs out of money" government checkbook.   :-)
Seriously, had they used the money on the Moon rather than the Space Station, it would probably have cost about the same.