10 Things to Know About Visiting Mars

Space travel has made exceptional progress
over the years. It was only in July 1969 that man first walked
on the moon, and now just 50 years later there are plans to send humans to Mars in the not-so-distant
future. According to NASA, they plan to send humans
to Mars by the year 2033. There have been several spacecrafts that have
landed on Mars – the United States has successfully landed eight on the Red Planet, including
Opportunity and InSight. While the spacecrafts have conducted exceptional
research on the planet, it’s not the same as having humans exploring the area. Although it’s exciting to think about humans
landing on Mars, they will encounter numerous problems during their exploration of our planetary
neighbor. From long-lasting dust storms and exceptionally
high radiation levels, to worrying about their food supply and their overall health, they
will have several obstacles to overcome — not to mention to extremely long trip there and
back. Let’s take a look at 10 of the most challenging
obstacles the astronauts will face on their journey. 10. Mars May Still Be Volcanically Active In a new study, it appears as though Mars
may still be volcanically active. Located under solid ice at the South Pole,
there is a lake of liquid water measuring 20 kilometers wide. While it was originally thought that the water
stayed in liquid format because of dissolved salt as well as pressure from above the lake,
new research provides a much different theory. The new study concluded that the salt and
pressure couldn’t have stopped the water from becoming frozen and that volcanic activity
(more specifically a magma chamber that was created in the previous few hundred years)
was the only way that it could have remained in liquid format. Mars was definitely volcanically active in
the past, as Olympus Mons is the biggest volcano in our entire solar system. Located near Olympus Mons are three other
shield volcanoes called Tharsis Montes, and there are several more volcanoes on the Red
Planet. According to the study, magma from the planet’s
interior came up to the surface around 300,000 years ago. Instead of breaking through the surface of
the planet and creating a new volcano, it remained in a magma chamber located beneath
the South Pole. When the magma chamber cooled down, it would
have released a sufficient amount of heat in order to melt the water underneath the
polar ice sheet. They believe that the heat is still being
slowly released even to this day. The authors of the study suggest that if there
was volcanic activity 300,000 years ago, there is a definite possibility that it’s still
active today which could cause an issue for eventual visitors to the planet. 9. Scarce Food Sources Astronauts need to eat and growing food on
Mars would be a very difficult task. In fact, it would take several hundred years
before farming could be conducted without protective greenhouses since the soil there
contains perchlorates, which are harsh chemicals that would need to be removed before any plants
could be grown. In addition to the chemicals, gravity would
also pose a problem as the planet only has around one-third of the gravity that’s here
on Earth. Although some experiments have proved some
plants can grow in the microgravity located on the International Space Station, that doesn’t
mean that they’ll grow on Mars. There is some hope, as revealed in a 2014
study that tomatoes, wheat, cress and mustard leaves were able to grow in simulated Martian
soil without fertilizers for 50 days. But transforming Mars into a planet capable
of growing plants would take hundreds of years for its thin atmosphere to contain enough
oxygen. Let’s say, for example, that humans could
quickly transform the atmosphere in order to grow plants, the winters pose another huge
problem as the temperatures can dip as low as -207 degrees Fahrenheit. 8. They’d Have To Wear Permanent Space Suits Astronauts visiting Mars would have to wear
permanent space suits during their trip as the planet is not suitable for humans. The suits would have to be flexible enough
for the astronauts to work with construction materials as well as for using different machines. Plus, they have to be comfortable enough for
them to essentially live in. As for the atmosphere there, it’s comparable
to being at an altitude of 25 kilometers on Earth, which means that the air would be much
too thin for humans to breathe. In addition to the thin air, there is way
too much carbon dioxide and not enough oxygen. And since the winter temperatures can get
as low as -207 degrees Fahrenheit, the astronauts need warm space suits to keep their blood
circulating throughout their bodies. These spacesuits will be their life-line,
so they need to be made perfectly for the astronauts to survive their exploration trip
to our planetary neighbor. 7. Creating A Human Civilization May Not Be So
Easy Obviously, the astronauts exploring the Red
Planet wouldn’t be there to create Martian families, but there is much talk about one
day humans colonizing there permanently. That may not be as easy as it sounds. Just the lack of gravitational pull and the
high amount of radiation are enough to severely damage a fetus. While there have been several experiments
involving mice, rats, frogs, salamanders, fish, and plants to see if they could successfully
reproduce in space, results have been inconclusive. While mice and humans are obviously different,
based on the experiments conducted, as of right now it’s not looking good for humans
to successfully reproduce on Mars. 6. Landing And Returning Landing on Mars will not be a smooth ride. For example, when NASA’s InSight spacecraft
entered into the atmosphere on Mars, it was moving at a whopping 12,300 MPH. While it was descending through the atmosphere,
it had to slow down to just 5 MPH before landing on the surface. The deceleration happened in less than seven
minutes, which NASA engineers referred to as “seven minutes of terror.” Since we know how to land on the Red Planet
– although it will most likely be one rough landing – leaving Mars may not be so easy. The Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV) will be powered
by liquid oxygen and methane, with all of the ingredients (hydrogen, carbon, and oxygen)
being available on Mars. The atmosphere is mostly carbon dioxide, so
that would be relatively easy to get; however, drilling for water would be much more challenging
as they wouldn’t be 100% certain that water lies underneath them. Assuming they would get the necessary ingredients
for the fuel, taking off from the harsh environment and atmosphere on Mars may not be an easy
lift-off. 5. Long-Lasting Dust Storms Mars is definitely known for their massive
dust storms – some of which are so huge that they can be seen from Earth-bound telescopes. As a matter of fact, some dust storms cover
the same area as an entire continent, lasting for several weeks. And approximately every three Mars years (or
five and a half Earth years), a gigantic dust storm covers the entire Red Planet which are
known as “global dust storms.” The good thing about the dust storms is that
the strongest winds only reach approximately 60 miles per hour, so it’s very unlikely
that they would damage any spacecrafts. On the other hand, the small dust particles
tend to stick to surfaces and even mechanical gears. One specific problem would be the solar panels
and if enough dust would cover them, they wouldn’t be able to absorb as much sunlight
in order to get the energy to power the equipment. 4. Extremely Rough Terrain And Chilling Weather The very rough and rocky terrain on Mars could
cause problems for the spacecraft as well as the astronauts who are trying to walk around
on the surface. The planet is covered with rocks, canyons,
volcanoes, craters, and dry lake beds, as well as red dust covering the majority of
the surface. The Curiosity rover experienced such problems
when, in 2013, it came upon an area with sharp rocks that looked similar to spikes. The sharp rocks – that looked like 3 to
4 inch teeth from a shark – were most likely created by the wind. These sharp rocks could dent and even puncture
wheels, not to mention how impossible they’d be to walk on. Astronauts visiting the Red Planet will certainly
not be accustomed to its extremely freezing cold temperatures. The average temperature on the planet is a
frigid -80 degrees Fahrenheit and can get as low as -207 degrees Fahrenheit during the
winter. They would need special spacesuits that would
keep them warm from the chilling temperatures. 3. High Levels Of Radiation And Very Little Gravity Since Mars has a much thinner atmosphere than
Earth, humans visiting the Red Planet will have very little protection against the high
levels of radiation. In fact, they have to worry about two dangerous
sources of radiation. The first are the dangerous solar flares that
come from our sun, for which they’ll need proper protection. The second are particles from galactic cosmic
rays that pass through the solar system almost at the speed of light and can damage anything
they hit, such as the spacecraft or even the astronauts themselves. The spacesuits, as well as the spacecrafts,
will need to be made from materials that will shield them from the high levels of radiation. Another major problem is that the gravity
on Mars is only a fraction of what it is on Earth. In fact, the gravity on the Red Planet is
62% lower than it is here on our planet. To better understand, if a person weighs 220
pounds on Earth, they would weigh just 84 pounds on Mars. There are several factors that contribute
to its lower gravity, such as density, mass, and radius of the planet. While both planets have nearly the same land
surface, Mars has just 15% of our planet’s volume and only 11% of our mass. While it’s still uncertain what long-term
effects the change in gravity would have on the astronauts’ health, research indicates
that the effects of microgravity would cause loss of bone density, muscle mass, organ function,
and eyesight. 2. The Long Journey To Mars Before the astronauts even get to Mars, they
would have to endure an exceptionally long journey just to get there. As for how long the trip would actually take,
there are several factors to take into consideration, such as where the planets are positioned in
the solar system at the time of the launch, since the distance between them is always
changing as they go around the sun. While the average distance between Mars and
Earth is 140 million miles, they do get much closer to each other depending on their position
around the sun. The two planets would be closest to each other
when Mars is located at its closest position to the sun and the Earth is at its farthest
position. At that point, the two planets would be 33.9
million miles away from each other. When the planets are located on opposite sides
of the sun, they are at a distance of 250 million miles from each other. According to NASA, the ideal launch to Mars
would take approximately nine months. And that’s just how long it would take to
get there. It would take another nine months or so to
return back to Earth, along with however long they end up staying on the Red Planet. 1. Mental And Physical Health Issues In addition to the rough terrain, freezing
temperatures, and dust storms, astronauts would also have to worry about the mental
and physical health issues that they could develop. The process of going from two highly different
gravitational fields would affect their spatial orientation, balance, mobility, motion sickness,
hand-eye and head-eye coordination. Being confined to a small space on an unpopulated
planet away from family and friends for several months or years would be mentally hard on
them. They could develop a drop in their mood, morale,
cognition, or a decline in their daily interactions (misunderstandings and impaired communication). In addition, they could develop sleep disorders,
fatigue, or even depression. Being in an enclosed area makes it very easy
for one person to transfer germs to the others, which could cause illnesses, allergies, or
diseases. The biggest health factor is the high levels
of radiation on Mars, which could increase their chances of developing cancer. Radiation can damage their central nervous
system, causing changes to their cognitive function, their behavior, and reducing their
motor function. It could also cause nausea, vomiting, fatigue,
and anorexia. Cardiac and circulatory diseases, as well
as cataracts, could additionally develop.

100 Replies to “10 Things to Know About Visiting Mars”

  1. On second thought, I am a very lazy man; having to wear a space suit for every single outing means I will spend 99.999% of my days in my Martian home, and die without nobody noticing. Oh wait, it's not that different from life on Earth.

  2. Astronaut Simon buzzkill summed it up ,why even send humans to mars, just keep sending more advanced robots, but this I guarantee, if there were an expensive commodity to be exploited there ,man would be there post haste

  3. Unless we terraform it AND some how give it a magnetic field, its gona be just an adventure, like climbing Mount Everest.

  4. First let’s decide if we’re just going to visit or if we’re going to create a settlement. For a visit the obstacles are not as difficult. The mothership that would take the travelers to Mars could be created with two large sections in the middle that would rotate in opposite directions using centrical force to simulate gravity. The two sections going in opposite directions the ship could remain more stable and you wouldn’t need to waste fuel keeping the for an aft section from spinning. You could have a large section for growing food and plant it with plants that have been well started on earth before transplanting on to the ship. You could insulate off a section of the ship from the heat within and allow the frigid temperatures of space to keep frozen foods frozen indefinitely and then stock that freezer with a large quantity and variety of meats. You could have parts designed to hold fuel for the escape launch from Mars and other supplies that would be needed on the surface. You could have several ships designed just for leaving the mothership to go and land on the planet that could be refueled and then return to the ship. You could mount two, three or four of these ships around the exterior either up by the front of the spaceship or back near the rear either of the two sections that were meant to stay more less stable and not rotate. This will be similar to the old Apollo missions to the moon where you had the main capsule that stayed in space and the lunar lander which ultimately returned the astronauts to the capsule. For electricity you have two big giant spinning sections with some magnets and some coils of wire you’re producing electricity. The biggest problem could be solved by building the ship in space because it would be almost impossible if not totally impossible to launch it from earth.

  5. Two minor criticisms:
    There seems to be an increasing number of Youtubers who say "return back to". It should be "return to" or "go back/come back to".
    Spacecraft is the plural of spacecraft. Spacecrafts tends to be used by the UFO nuts and other people of low intelligence or poor educational background.
    Get a better proof reader, or at least one who is literate.

  6. Personally, I believe we have the technology to get to Mars and return. Surviving is the problem with food, water, radiation, loneliness and everything Simon has mentioned. To get there and return is not far off at all. My opinion is living and surviving the ordeal is where we are many decades away from solving. Perhaps in my great great grandchildren's lifetime it could happen. Just my opinion..

  7. If man slowly introduced himself to the Martian atmosphere he would eventually evolve to be able breath the Martian air. Or we could genetically alter a human to do this here on earth. We could create a " Martian". Hey! This would make a good movie! Lol!

  8. Would it be practical to send only young women regarding earth biology colonisation? Everything else will go as seeds, surely?

  9. How about the most telling: the gravity is so low that we will not be able to live on Mars for any amount of years, meaning that any attempt to colonize Mars will fail utterly? We'd do better to have satellites in the upper atmosphere of Venus.

  10. Don't worry. We will overcome these problems with time. But I think we should populate the moon first to test and debug equipment and gear. 😋

  11. I couldn't imagine how amazing it will be for the first people who get there, seeing mars off in the black of space getting closer and closer untill you finally arrive. Hopefully we'll be able to watch it live if it ever happens.

  12. Lmfao well number one should be how to get passed the van allen radiation belt that surrounds our planet and is why we never got to the moon, nice try white boy but i still love this channel. 🤣💁🏼‍♀️🍕

  13. Oh not to worry Elon will solve all the problems LOL. Millennials will rent out their bedrooms and move to Mars.

  14. Human beings are so specifically adapted for life on Earth, that I am starting to think colonizing other planets on a large scale is just impossible because of the many, many problems involved in keeping us alive there. Mars is easy compared to anywhere else in our solar system, and it is still ridiculously hard.

  15. Little known fact. Simon is a Martian. Signs are 1. Bad fake British accent. 2. Chest hair double earth bound humans. 3. Bald head with fake horseshoe stubble 4. Propoganda put forth on utube.

  16. It is HIGHLY UNLIKELY for a human trip to Mars in the next hundred years. It is simply too difficult to boost the required equipment into Earth orbit (with today's boosters), and the required equipment will be huge, especially the landing & return rockets. It is silly to consider making fuel on Mars, since that will require factories and power supplies that would weight MORE than merely sending the fuel along. In reality, NOBODY has yet truly thought a manned Mars expedition through properly. It will prove MUCH MORE DIFFICULT & EXPENSIVE than anybody now thinks. And, as for expense, it would end up costing TRILLIONS of dollars, not mere billions, and nobody is going to pay that much for a mission of questionable return on investment. Remember Hofstadter's Law;
    “It always takes longer [and costs more money] than you expect, even when you take into account Hofstadter's Law.”

    It WILL eventually be done, but not until an air-breathing orbital booster is developed for heavy lifting and many other technical advancements are made. The year 2030 is absurd; 2300 is much more likely.

  17. I personally believe the real interest of going to Mars is because scientist know that resources on earth are dwindling down and can’t support most of us in the future. Mars is the new slate

  18. It would make MUCH more sense to put a permanent base on the moon first so the distance wouldn't be such a problem. However, we have been warned by someone out there NOT to!

  19. Dust winds at 60 mph. How close is that to the Santa Anna wind? The Santa Anna wind is known to drive people crazy. Truly.

  20. The idea of astronauts walking around on the surface of mars and growing plants and stuff is silly. The only feasible solution (and maybe not even that) would be for all the personal there to be in virtual reality chambers (buried underground) with a 360 degree treadmill and strapped down with elastic bands connected to all points to simulate gravity. In addition, whole body vibration could possibly augment bone loss. Then they would control semi autonomous robotic avatars that would be stationed all over their work areas, and they could remote in and do their work via the vr chamber.

    Food would be grown aeroponically and robotically. Terraforming mars is a pipe dream that could only be achieved with a magnetic field to keep the newly developed atmosphere from being blown into the solar system. Pass on that silly idea.

    Also, take off could be solved by not even stationing personal on mars, but instead on Phobos. It would have way less gravity, but mars' gravity is poor for human health anyway – in for a penny – in for a pound – stay on Phobos – strapped down in vr. It would be cake to take off there, and it's close proximity to mars would make it easy enough to remote into the semi autonomous robots on the surface of mars.

    And the loneliness of being on mars would be mitigated by beautiful landscapes and wide open vistas and familiar scents could be provided by the vr chamber. And hopefully AI could provide companionship – perhaps mimicking their love one's relatives/friends, and that could always provide feedback to their real relatives and friends to make the AI more and more real (we still have a long way to go there though – but the other stuff we already have).

    But the trip there and back would still be problematic, and I got therething there that other smarter people have already planned about.

  21. If you Land on another planet, you won't miss home at all, every step you take will be a new discovery. Build a faster rocket gentlemen

  22. You neglected to mention which chemicals are in the soil and *who put them there.

    You also neglected to mention the biggest reason why Mars is hostile to life, which is its conspicuous absence of a magnetosphere.

  23. Solar power will not work to settle Mars we will have to use nuclear power from day one or settlements will fail.

  24. What are you saying? With the exception of radiation and soil, plants should love Mars. The process that plants take CO2 and theough photosynthesis, change it into oxygen. The problem is solar energy to kick start photosynthesis.

  25. There has been huge progress in anti radiation drugs…… a pill or an injection taken daily or every month could block there cells from absorbing radiation, obviously there is still long way to go before it’s approved like years

    Hmmmmmmmmmm water shouldn’t be a problem…….. there is plenty of carbon dioxide so you can scrub that into oxygen to breath…… there is also hydrogen,phosphorus and carbon in abundance in Martian soil…… if you could extract the hydgeon from that and combine that with the scrubbed 02 you have water and fuel for a fusion reactor (which is best for a large fuel source and would be needed to power these automated factories)

    Also nasa want to make a series of large vacuum lift blimps on mars…. the pressure is to high for earth but on mars it’s very possible this would allow astronauts ways to get around fast and they can travel above any sand storm with solar panels covering the top…… they could also be controlled remotely and act as communication relays

    I think 2035 is optimistic our technology is not sufficiently advanced I think a series of missions automated construction drones sent to mars to build factories living unites etc then more and more then the people I don’t see humans there until 2070+

  26. We need to establish colonies outside of Earth, just to ensure the survive-ability of the species. Plus, it will help us further push the boundaries of science. A lot of these problems are the same problems you'd have on the moon, or in space. Gravity would be harder to conquer on Mars than in space as you couldn't simulate it there as easily, but as far as the soil, that can be processed. Growing crops would require greenhouses to control the conditions–you couldn't have them exposed to the Martian elements like terrestrial crops and expect them to flourish. As far as radiation you could help shield against that with shield linings or lead–heck there is some indication that strong magnetic fields could also help in this regard. Of course there'll be difficulties on living off-Earth, but again, to survive we can't put all our eggs into one basket. There is also a lot of static electricity on Mars; you'd need shielding for electronics as well. The best idea I've heard yet is to build and land an autonomous base first (robots, get everything sorted out), and then land colonists–they'd then have to work on maintaining the base, building up their own supply lines.

  27. food production ? i think is the number 1 problem. toxic soil. liquid water. extreem cold. just a few things. most work should be done by robots

  28. I will agree that this would not be easy. I will say though that most of the problems here have actually been solved. If interested I am willing to talk about them with those that want to.

  29. We choose to go to (Mars) in (the next) decade and do other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard…

  30. Zero gravity isnt the same as reduced gravity. We know what zero gravity does but we dont know how plants or humans will cope. Plants and human development might be perfectly fine. Apparently this channel knows things which havent been studied

  31. We are not going, quit pretending we will. I t would be a suicide mission at best. Are bodies evolved to thrive on this planet, we are not equipped for space travel.

  32. That's funny. You think the first trip to mars will have a return trip. The first few are very likely to be one way. And end horribly. But that's wjat it takes sometimes to advance science.

  33. And people still want to go there? What a romantic notion… training would include years of isolation with just a few people around them and very limited communication. In this FB age it would be difficult to find many people willing to give up their information addiction.

  34. I usually love these videos but this one had too many glaring issues. It sounds like it was scripted by someone lacking any depth of knowledge in the subject matter.

  35. You can never get a atmosphere that can sustain complex life. Any thicker atmosphere will be stripped by the solar winds. We need to restore the rotation of the core to rebuild the magneto sphere to build a heavy atmosphere.

  36. Cheapest solution would be to design a specific algae/fungus that could convert various materials and sunlight into oxygen/nitrogen etc. Or design specific plants that could thrive off a low atmospheric density and pump out more atmosphere.
    Considering mars has a large volume of carbon dioxide earth based plants should thrive with some genetic tampering and proper generational acclimitation.
    If you can get the process started then it should thicken the atmospheric soup in time. Water could be transported from the polar ice caps using a sealed water tubule network above ground or underground pipelines. The biggest problem would be dust storms ripping and or covering any fauna implantation efforts, so perhaps building bio domes all across the globe in various locations to ensure a steady atmospheric terraforming could take place.

  37. You forgot that, with Mars being further from the sun, it will get less light per square foot, less than 25% of what we get on Earth, which is not enough to grow most food plants. You better like Mushrooms.

  38. So… I really appreciate the challenges we face, but would you kindly consider researching the top ten possible solutions to these problems that have been proposed?

    Realistic assessment is important, but let’s get some positivity on this topic please.

  39. It's really quite easy to talk about the challenges, for many viewers these are nothing new. Much more interesting content would be how to solve them (solutions do or will exist of course)

  40. People take Mars lightly because Venus is a planetary image of hell. But Mars is brutal! Don’t let extreme examples like Venus fool you into thinking Mars is even close to being easily habitable.

  41. Next video, "10 Things to Know About Visiting Venus" please!
    Sounds really stupid at first, until you consider "cloud cities"
    NASA does have a concept plan for a manned missing there that someone with a sense of humour code named "HAVOC" (High Altitude Venus Operational Concept)

    Breathing air on Venus floats up to 50kms above the surface, where temps are a steady 70c, gravity is 0.9 & air pressure is the same as sea level earth. A fully enclosed, lightweight structure left untethered, will naturally float up to that same height, just like it would float to the ocean surface if put on or under the water on earth. Raise it an extra 2kms higher with some helium or hydrogen & temperature is only 32c, while everything else is basicly the same.

    All the problems you raised in this video are largely resolved on Venus, some new ones to address of course, but in reality, they're probably easier to fix than the Mars ones, it's just the thought of not landing that freaks people out & makes them abort the idea. Would love if you could do some research on it & a video about some of the more interesting stuff you find on it 🙂 I think it's a fascinating subject, but very poorly understood by most people, so perfect video material for your channel imo

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