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  1. Subscriber sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    25 Jul '18 14:13
    https://www.sciencealert.com/vast-liquid-water-reservoir-found-on-mars-radar-planum-australe-subglacial-lake

    My question, if true and we go to Mars in the future could it be a source of drinking water? If it is contaminated with magnesium and such like the piece says, would it be energetically worth it to extract pure water from such a source V using water ice found at the poles or some such?
  2. Standard member DeepThought
    Losing the Thread
    25 Jul '18 14:34
    Originally posted by @sonhouse
    https://www.sciencealert.com/vast-liquid-water-reservoir-found-on-mars-radar-planum-australe-subglacial-lake

    My question, if true and we go to Mars in the future could it be a source of drinking water? If it is contaminated with magnesium and such like the piece says, would it be energetically worth it to extract pure water from such a source V using water ice found at the poles or some such?
    Compared with taking the stuff there definitely. I haven't looked at the article, but if it's at any depth and there is water available at the poles then that is the easier option. Removing contamination isn't a problem.
  3. 25 Jul '18 22:00
    To what extent would it be morally acceptable to alter Mars's 'ecosystem' by introducing
    farming (taking advantage of existing water) if we establish a colony on Mars?
  4. Standard member DeepThought
    Losing the Thread
    25 Jul '18 23:52
    Originally posted by @duchess64
    To what extent would it be morally acceptable to alter Mars's 'ecosystem' by introducing
    farming (taking advantage of existing water) if we establish a colony on Mars?
    Is there any life there whatsoever?
  5. Subscriber sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    26 Jul '18 01:26
    Originally posted by @deepthought
    Is there any life there whatsoever?
    The article says generally if there is liquid water there is a chance for life, but they also said the conditions of the contamination allowing liquid water at such low temperatures may be too toxic for life. Of course we have been surprised before in that regard, like the extremophiles we found living in those hot vents in the bottom of the ocean.
    But you have to realize if life is actually discovered on Mars it will be the tail end of existence for them, the sweet spot of life was most likely billions of years ago on Mars.
    So it's not like we would be disturbing a thriving ecosystem.
    If there is some bacterial life hanging on by a thread, what chance is there for some kind of evolutionary expansion to something more complex?
    If that was the case I don't see a problem with Earth colonies there. Any bacteria we discover there would be unlikely to be able to attack humans and vice versa but of course time will tell, assuming we actually get to Mars safely.

    I think it more likely more advanced life may exist in places like Enceladus where the sub surface ocean is planet wide which may allow a real eco system, It seems to me there would be more of a chance of more advanced forms in a place like that and therefore in more need of protection from Earth life.
  6. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Just another day
    26 Jul '18 05:54
    Originally posted by @duchess64
    To what extent would it be morally acceptable to alter Mars's 'ecosystem' by introducing
    farming (taking advantage of existing water) if we establish a colony on Mars?
    We'd probably need to use nuclear lighting...the solar flux on Mars must be very low.
  7. Subscriber sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    26 Jul '18 10:17
    Originally posted by @athousandyoung
    We'd probably need to use nuclear lighting...the solar flux on Mars must be very low.
    Lower sure but not THAT low, just under 600 W/M^2 compared to about 1Kw/M^2 on Earth and that is going through an atmosphere 1% of Earth so more of it reaches the ground.
    If we get to the point of making 40% cells that would just about equal the ~20% cells we have on Earth now so it looks to me like solar would be usable on Mars and we would not need to rely on nuclear exclusively. That said, right now there is a Mars-wide dust storm that is putting to sleep the rovers powered by solar on Mars right now and they can last for months so nuclear would probably be needed as well as solar.

    Since the Martian day is close to Earth day some form of energy storage would be needed just like on Earth and one likely candidate would be just pumping water uphill in airtight piping and such or some form of advanced battery technology, maybe efficient H2 generation.
  8. 26 Jul '18 10:56 / 3 edits
    Originally posted by @sonhouse
    That said, right now there is a Mars-wide dust storm that is putting to sleep the rovers powered by solar on Mars right now and they can last for months so nuclear would probably be needed as well as solar.
    Unless, and perhaps only excluding its ice caps, the whole of the surface of Mars was completely covered in factories and laboratories run by AIs smarter than any human and all manufactured by robots which were themselves manufactured by robots which were themselves manufactured by robots etc.
    Then there would be no exposed dust on the surface of Mars for the winds to pick up because all the dust would be under the buildings and other infrastructures.
    Then maximum solar energy will be guaranteed every day.
    This is what I envision will happen in the far future.
    But I don't envision humans there in particular because I don't see any point in ever putting a human on Mars as Earth would always be more hospitable to human life even with terraforming.
  9. Subscriber sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    26 Jul '18 11:13
    Originally posted by @humy
    Unless, and perhaps only excluding its ice caps, the whole of the surface of Mars was completely covered in factories and laboratories run by AIs smarter than any human and all manufactured by robots which were themselves manufactured by robots which were themselves manufactured by robots etc.
    Then there would be no exposed dust on the surface of Mars for the ...[text shortened]... g a human on Mars as Earth would always be more hospitable to human life even with terraforming.
    Well that wouldn't happen for quite a jump into the future if ever. First we have to safely get there and that will at first be very small number of people with whatever they can carry, AI perhaps would help but they still would need drillers, cutters, and the rest of the tools needed to mine resources including water. Your AI scheme would probably happen on Earth way before anything like that on Mars. Besides, that is only Mars. There are many more places even in the solar system to potentially colonize before we get, if ever, to the point where we can contemplate interstellar colonization. We seem to see the way to get to maybe 10% of c with fusion powered craft or maybe 30% c with antimatter or some such or directed energy propulsion, like gigawatt lasers or microwaves.

    I think you have seen my pet theory, that the concentrated starlight from Sol's own gravity lens effect could power mirror techniques where for instance the light from Alpha Centauri concentrated by Sol's gravity lens so you could travel on the line going away from AC which of course even if that works would beg the question of what is there in that direction that would be a worthwhile destination. But there are a lot of those spikes of energy, for instance, the line of light concentrated of Sirius going away on the other side of the sun away from Sirius, is there anything to be gained if you had some destination worth going to the effort needed to get in that energy spike.