News Reality

Why Mars? An Introduction To A 10-Part Series On Sending Humans To Mars

by www.huffingtonpost.com

Momentum is steadily and inexorably building toward sending human missions to Mars beginning in the 2030s. While this goal has been an integral part of United States space policy over the past fifty years, the reality of achieving that goal has always seemed so very far in the future. Recently, however, a critical mass of support, technical progress, and scientific momentum has coalesced that may very well finally propel humanity to the Red Planet.

Mars has been the subject of a great deal of media coverage in recent years, with frequent images and scientific updates coming from various United States and international Mars robotic missions. Hollywood has also been drumming the Mars beat, with movies such as The Martian, as well as the upcoming six part National Geographic series, Mars, and the feature film The Space Between Us (with more to come).

As for policy, Congress has included Mars in multiple authorization bills ? and the Senate is currently moving forward with a Transition Authorization bill that contains the most comprehensive language in support of Mars exploration ever to appear in a major bill.

NASA has also embraced this goal, with its Journey to Mars program, and last October it also held its first workshop to investigate potential landing sites for the first human explorers. Industry has also jumped on the bandwagon, with companies such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and Aerojet Rocketdyne having released their own proposals as to how to send humans to Mars – and in late September SpaceX joined the chorus when it announced its own ambitious plans.

Recent polls have also shown overwhelming public support for this goal.  Yet, some people still ask Why? Why should we take the time and spend taxpayer dollars? Some even ask why should we take the risks inherent in any space mission ? let alone missions to a planet millions of miles away?

History teaches us that ambitious exploration and innovation projects of this kind have always tended to benefit humanity.

Unfortunately, much misinformation has been disseminated claiming that such missions would cost upwards of $1 trillion.  In reality, none of the current credible plans would require anywhere close to that amount, and in fact they would require far less. (To put this in perspective, all NASA budgets combined since 1958 don’t come close to totaling $1 trillion – even with adjusted dollars).

Others ask why we should send humans to Mars when there are problems here on Earth that need to be addressed; but history teaches us that ambitious exploration and innovation projects of this kind have always tended to benefit humanity. Our home world will undoubtedly end up far worse off if we don’t engage in such ambitious missions that will improve life on Earth.

To better answer the question why (and how) we should send humans to Mars, we are launching a series of op-eds for the next 10-12 weeks from prominent individuals from a variety disciplines to answer the question “Why Mars?’ from the perspective of (in no particular order) –

1) Scientist

2) Astronaut

3) Policy Expert

4) Student

5) International Representative 

6) Mission Architect 

7) STEM professional 

8) Innovator/Entrepreneur 

9) Medical/Psychological professional

10) Science Fiction author

11) Celebrity

The United States – including government, industry, academia, and the general public ? and our international partners are on the verge of moving forward with one of the most significant and awe-inspiring endeavors in human history. There are many compelling reasons why we should undertake this great journey. Over the next several weeks, you will read perspectives from prominent people in the United States and in Europe, each explaining their own visions of why we should explore Mars.

This piece is part of a special op-ed series, curated in partnership with Explore Mars, in which contributors from diverse fields such as science, education, policy, business and culture answer a simple question: “Why Mars?” For more, follow the links below or visit exploremars.org.

type=type=RelatedArticlesblockTitle=Why Mars? + articlesList=57fd0308e4b0b6a430359448

-- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.


Read Full Article On www.huffingtonpost.com
Latest
According to NASA, reaching the solstice, and observing seasonal changes in the Saturn system along the way, was a primary goal of Cassini's Solstice Mission - the name of Cassini's second
Funeral arrangements have been announced for six-year-old Kingston Frazier, who was found with dead inside his mother’s stolen car May 18 in Jackson. Three Mississippi teenagers are facing a capital
Infosys Ltd, the India-based computer services giant, on Wednesday touted its new strategy to hire and train 10,000 American workers over the next two years at the company's annual leadership meeting
During a press conference on Wednesday, the White House said Trump was still deciding even as 40 Senate Democrats signed and sent a letter to him to not back out of the international climate change p
“Lucifer” Season 2 will air its final episode next week, and it will center on Lucifer Morningstar (Tom Ellis) making a tough decision regarding the fate of his mom, Charlotte (Tricia Helfer).
“Scorpion” Season 4 could see new milestones in the lives of Happy (Jadyn Wong) and Toby (Eddie Kaye Thomas) and Walter (Elyes Gabel) and Paige (Katharine McPhee). In the previous season, Happy and T
A Dungeons & Dragons dungeon master is killed while playing the fantasy tabletop game in Season 3, episode 9 of “iZombie.” According to the synopsis for the episode, Clive (Malcolm Goodwin) and L
Acer has revealed the next version of its Acer Spin 1 convertible laptop ahead of Computex 2017 in Taipei, Taiwan.
Acer has unveiled its next affordable gaming laptop, the Acer Nitro 5, rocking your choice of Nvidia or AMD GPUs.
Big reductions in price for a bunch of popular iOS games, include a large amount of titles reduced to $0.99, with some even available for free
Indiana University students Christian Perry and Noah Maxwell produce The Christian and Noah Show on YouTube.        
Netflix's upcoming Castlevania anime series gets a mysterious and bloody first trailer.
Cam Adair, founder of "Game Quitters," says finding alternate activities is key for people hoping to stop playing video games.
A Tory promise to offer free breakfasts to primary school pupils could go beyond the party's Ł60m costing.
A self-taught industrial designer, Mr. Fresco promoted an alternative society where resources would be distributed equitably by computers.
MSI introduces the Infinity A, its biggest gaming desktop in a long while.
We're living in the golden age of television. So what, exactly, should you be watching? We have the answers.
Magnetar Capital began a billion-dollar quantitative effort six years ago to help the $13.5 billion firm buck a hedge-fund massacre waylaying its peers and set to rest memories of its controversial su
Xbox's Netflix-style game subscription service launches next month - here's what to play first.
In the wake of the massive ransomware attack called WannaCry that infected hundreds of thousands of computers in 150 countries, the public has not lost faith in Microsoft even though its operating sy
The size of a business jet, it will take off from 2020 like a rocket, boost itself beyond the atmosphere and release an expendable second-stage rocket and satellite, then and land like an airplane o
Sony is shaking up its smartphone lineup in the hopes of returning to mobile glory.
Social media apps give a way to share photos and ideas with the world but they could cause sleep deprivation and emotional turmoil.        
Dubai is making it easier for financial technology companies to test out their ideas through a temporary licence
The test requires the use of an iPhone and computer in tandem and 12-feet of space. It takes about 20 minutes and is reviewed by an eye doctor who compares the results to a previous prescription.
A new analysis from Netflix has found that people prefer their eggs with a side of comedy, drama on their lunch break, thrillers at dinner and documentaries for a late night snack.
The dancing bot, designed by researchers at Tohoku University in Japan, adjusts its teaching based on the user's number of previous practice sessions and performance history.
In the study, published to Scientific Reports, researchers from the UK and Germany built a model for 270 range shifts in marine organisms. They mapped direction of currents and warming.
Live streaming beautification feature lets you compare skin tone with 400% light sensitivity options
U.S. retailer Target agreed to pay $18.5 million as part of a settlement over a 2013 data breach that resulted in the theft of credit and debit card information from tens of millions of customers. T
If you wear a fitness tracker you probably rely on the data it gives you. You may meticulously track how well you slept, how many steps you took, your heart rate and probably how many calories you bu
Experts reveal the scientific reasons why the effects of day drinking may differ from a night out. They suggest it could due to your behavior, being under duress or circadian rhythms.
Twitter launched its streaming app on the Apple TV last fall, and the platform is now introducing 360-degree videos for users with the device. The social media platform announced Wednesday its Apple
Bosch UK is selling mini-cameras which can be installed inside the fridge to connect to an app on the owner's phone allowing them to check the contents while their in the shops.

Recent News

Volkswagen Tiguan drives into Indian roads: 5 key features you want to know

Volkswagen has announced the launch of the much awaited premium carline, based on the modern MQB platform –the Volkswagen Tiguan.
Read Full Article

Graco recalls car seats; says webbing may not hold child in crash

TORONTO - Graco Children's products is recalling 1,393 child car seats in Canada due to a problem with harness webbing. An advisory from the company's Canadian division says the recall covers ......
Read Full Article

World: Trump faces rougher reception in NATO, EU meetings

After a warm welcome in the Middle East and a "fantastic" visit with the pope, U.S. President Donald Trump walks on shakier ground on Thursday when European Union and NATO leaders will press him on de
Read Full Article

World: Al Shabaab bombing in Somali capital kills five, injures six

A bombing claimed by Islamist insurgents killed five civilians and injured six more in the Somali capital on Wednesday, a spokesman for the city's mayor said, underscoring the militants' ability to ca
Read Full Article

Africa: Al Shabaab bombing in Somali capital kills five, injures six

A bombing claimed by Islamist insurgents killed five civilians and injured six more in the Somali capital on Wednesday, a spokesman for the city's mayor said, underscoring the militants' ability to ca
Read Full Article

Carolyn Hax: A few tips on gratuities and special orders

A mother is upset that her daughter and son-in-law added to the amount left on the table.
Read Full Article

Miss Manners: Don’t like being on speaker? Speak up!

Reader complains about sibling, who frequently uses the hands-free function.
Read Full Article

Hints From Heloise: Toilet tablet makes plumber blue

Reader suggests using vinegar, which won’t hurt the rubber flapper or clog jets.
Read Full Article

Ask Amy: Worker tries to cope with bullying boss

Reader is scared to lose her job but can’t stand the office environment.
Read Full Article

Popular Finance

Montana’s congressional race is about more than Trump — including an election-eve report of an assault on a journalist

On Thursday, the political world will eagerly look to Montana and a closely fought congressional race for the latest test of Democratic strength and Republican resilience in the turbulent age of T
Read Full Article

Montana’s congressional race is about more than Trump — including an election-eve report of an assault

On Thursday, the political world will eagerly look to Montana and a closely fought congressional race for the latest test of Democratic strength and Republican resilience in the turbulent age of T
Read Full Article

Trump reveals location of 2 nuclear submarines to Philippines' president

President Trump praised the Philippines' president for an "unbelievable job" in a fight against illegal drugs that has left thousands dead and drawn condemnation from American lawmakers, according
Read Full Article

Warrant issued for Bikram yoga founder beset by legal woes

A Los Angeles judge Wednesday issued an arrest warrant for the founder of Bikram yoga, who’s been ordered to hand over proceeds from his global fitness business to satisfy a $6.8-million judgment
Read Full Article

Montana GOP candidate grabbed reporter 'by the neck ... and slammed him into the ground,' Fox News journalist says

A national political reporter for the Guardian newspaper said Montana GOP congressional candidate Greg Gianforte body-slammed him and broke his glasses Wednesday before a campaign event in Bozeman
Read Full Article

Chatsworth will face Birmingham for City baseball title

It has become pretty clear in recent years that if you want to win a City Section baseball title, you need a pitcher to come out of the dugout late in the game and deliver a playoff victory. Chats
Read Full Article

Baseball: City semifinal results and championship schedule

Read Full Article

Baseball: Wednesday's Southern Section playoff score

Read Full Article

Softball: Wednesday's Southern Section playoff score

Read Full Article