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Living on Mars Long-Term Possible, NASA Report Concludes

Jul 28, 2016 12:51 AM EDT
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This is what it's like to spend eight months on Mars

With the explorations done by NASA, and the 2030 expedition set in stone, is living on planet Mars a possibility? Now, NASA reports that long-term living on the red planet could be really possible. Has Matt Damon's "The Martian" film provided a pre-sight into the future of life on Mars?

In a full technical paper by NASA entitled "Frontier In-Situ Resource Utilization for Enabling Sustained Human Presence on Mars," long-term colonization by humans on planet Mars is highly feasible. There is however a catch, pioneers of the red planet have to "live off the land."

"There are massive resources on Mars obtainable from the atmosphere and extracted from the regolith which are capable of supporting human colonization," state the authors.

Existing technologies could provide fuel, oxygen, water, as well as building materials. The report adds that NASA should be able to match ISRU (In-Situ Resource Utilization) with frontier technologies such as 3D printing and autonomy, nanotechnology, machine intelligence, synthetic biology, and robotics.

"These technologies, combined with the vast natural resources, should enable serious, pre- and post-human arrival ISRU to greatly increase reliability and safety and reduce cost for human colonization of Mars," explains NASA.

NASA's technical report that life on Mars is feasible adds to earlier studies and reports. In 2010, planetary scientists Robert Zubrin and Christopher McKay discussed and proposed visual concepts about how Mars could offer a "friendly" atmosphere for creatures of the Earth. Terraforming Mars is a thousand-year project for the two scientists.

Now, the thousand-year project proposed by the scientists is clearly a possibility. NASA already has the Curiosity rover and has other tech amalgams on the red planet. For their space mission in 2020, the next rover with more advanced technology is set to join. On the other hand, astronauts for the 2030 Mars expedition have gone under sea as well in preparation for their mission.

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