Can Mars eventually take on humans?

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It sounds like something out of a science fiction movie, take an inhospitable planet and make it livable. Can we do it with Mars?

ASU planetary scientist, Dr. Jim Bell, is looking into it. His job is to investigate Mars with rovers and determine if human life could withstand living there. He talked about his findings so far.

We talk about taking the environment of a planet and turning it into an earth-like environment. Mars is one of the only places that we could think about doing that, he said.

We talked about how difficult that would be. He said “extremely difficult.” Bell said to make that big of a change would be hard.

Terraform is “kind of science fiction” today, Bell said. We talked about what comes first to approach this. He explains there is a small number of places in the solar system that the conditions could be or were habitable.

Mars is on the top of the list because it is pretty close compared to other places, and it has an atmosphere and some of those things. But he also said mars makes “Antarctica look like a tropical wonderland.”

We talked about what the red and smokiness are on Mars. He also explained the dust storms.

There is water ice and CO2 ice on Mars Bell explains, he said. He said they don’t know how much, but it may be enough to help sustain them.

He explains that we don’t know enough about the other planets to know if Jupiter or other planets would be better.

They are focussing on mars because it is relatively close compared to the other planets. We ask him if this is something we should be pursuing. He answered all these questions for us.

He explains that we don’t have a very good history when it comes to exploring, but we can definitely do better when it comes to other planets.

Dr. Jim Bell, Planetary Scientist, ASU

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