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Moving to Space? National Geographic Gives a Peek at What Houses on Mars Might Look Like

Nov 09, 2016 05:10 AM EST
Phoenix Mars Lander Arrives On Mars
A National Geographic docudrama will explore the potential design of Martian homes in the future.
(Photo : NASA/JPL via Getty Images)

Sci-Fi dreams are slowly turning into reality as builders are already looking at the potential design of houses on Mars.

Building a house is no easy feat especially if it has to be constructed off the Earth and on Mars with a harsher environment, very thin atmosphere and almost a dead and dry land. For Martian homes, the main use is to preserve the life of the crew and at the same time having a sustainable process that will be able to provide a decent supply of oxygen and food to its inhabitants.

National Geographic will be releasing a six-part docudrama called "Mars" where the first Mars showhome will be revealed.  The Mars showhome will give humans an idea of what future homes on the red planet might look like. Although the setting shown is fictitious, there are a lot of red planet references that are not too far-fetched as technology is keeping up with sci-fi. Just like how NASA says some of the technologies mentioned in the TV franchise 'Star Trek' are already being used today like powerful spacecraft engines and the hologram technology.

The docudrama series is set in the year 2037 in the Valles Marineris region on the red planet. The actual region can be found near the equator on Mars. The homes are depicted as igloo-like but stronger. Any homes that will be built on the red planet should be able to withstand the changing weather on Mars.

Some builders already released their versions of potential Martian homes, most of which explore a series of underground tunnels that seemed more appropriate in a planet with a harsh environment.

In the docudrama, the igloo-like home was built with repurposed Martian soil turned into bricks called regolith. Just like real scientists and commercial spaceflight companies who are eyeing the potential of Martian materials for building Martian homes and even fuelling spacecraft. Elon Musk for one, wanted to explore the components available on Mars and to see if any of them can be harvested and turned into spacecraft propellant.

National Geographic depicted a Martian home with vital areas like bedroom and kitchen, but there are obvious omissions like windows. Since Mars is nearer than the Sun, the inhabitants should be protected from the Solar energy, but in real life, the sun could also be a good thing giving future Martians an unlimited supply of energy.

 "We don't think of our houses as things that keep us alive, but on Mars, your dwelling will be a survival center," Stephen Petranek, author of How We'll Live on Mars and a consultant on Mars said in a statement.

Gone are the days when Martian dreams are nothing but fiction. Today, various companies and space agencies have their eyes on Mars. SpaceX and NASA are about to send humans to Mars in the next decade and new landers are expected to arrive on the red planet as early as 2018 so the need for Martian homes looks inevitable.


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