From domed cities to aliens: What would life on the Red Planet actually look like?
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Whether we’re exploring Mars or attempting to colonize it, futurists have some tantalizing visions of what our lives on the Red Planet could look like.
Inverse asked geophysicist Mika McKinnon, who’s been a science consultant for numerous sci-fi movies and TV shows, to help separate fact from fiction in futuristic Mars art.
“When you're already working on a planet with very, very few accessible resources, that is a really great way for everybody to die.”
First of all, the rocket is too close to the people and other structures nearby to lift off without incinerating them.
Second, it lacks boosters, which means it wouldn’t be capable of making it to space.
Unfortunately, most exposed plants on Mars would freeze, McKinnon points out.
There would also have to be nutrient-rich soil and water for this plant to grow — presumably from a river that had once run down the side of this cliff.
Over time, that water flow would soften the ground — leaving this outcropping especially unstable.
Cacti are experts at storing water — a feature that would actually make them more susceptible to death by freezing, thanks to the thin Martian atmosphere.
Currently, NASA’s Perseverance rover is attempting to create oxygen from the Martian atmosphere.
If humans make it to Mars, it would make sense to set up an experimental site where we attempt to grow greenery.
McKinnon says this base looks like a modular system — meaning it could be built in pieces as teams bring parts to Mars.
That’s how other structures, like the International Space Station, were built.
But the one thing that’s missing?
Redundancies — extra copies of some of the essential buildings and solar panels in the event of a disaster.