Saturday, 13 April 2019

Research: First Mars Colony

A Brief History of the Future by Charles Joynton suggests that the first mission to Mars was sent in 2071. One of the biggest challenges in trying to establish a colony there is the extreme weather conditions. The film The Martian starring Matt Damon illustrated well the extremes of temperature and the dust storms.

An article on the USA Today website by NASA expert Ashley May list four main obstacles to humans living on Mars:
  • We have to land
  • We would need to blast off from Mars
  • We would need to wear spacesuits -- all the time
  • We'd have to get used to dust storms
Mars ice home concept
The Wikipedia article about the colonisation of Mars has an illustration of a habitation module made out of ice, and the Mars One project actually has an animated mockup of their proposed solution. All the science fiction I've seen portrays various types of habitation modules, but Charles Joynton has a novel approach.
Mars One habitation
The shuttles of the Mars mission land in a sand-filled crater and fire their thrusters downwards to sink the shuttles into the sand. A tube is attached to an airlock in the shuttles' roof to give access to the surface, extending as the shuttles sink to the bedrock. Once the three shuttles are stable they build tunnels connecting the rear airlocks, which are double and can be moved along the tunnel to test that the tunnel is airtight. In this way they overcome all the problems with the weather - by building underground!
Mars colony concept (Wikipedia)
Ann Marie Thomas is the author of four medieval history books, a surprisingly cheerful poetry collection about her 2010 stroke, and the science fiction series Flight of the Kestrel. Book one, Intruders, and book two Alien Secrets, are out now. Follow her at

No comments:

Post a Comment