From the second half of the 19th century, humans have been attempting to ascend to the cosmos above us, seduced by the notion of space travel. In 1960, the first recorded attempt of a Mars probe by the Soviet Union was recorded with NASA, Marsnik 1 (also known as Korabl 4 and Mars 1960A).
Mars, the fourth planet from the sun, is an enigmatic world with a bewitching red color, which gives it the name ‘Red Planet’. Formed around the same time as Earth, it’s half of our planet’s diameter and is the only planet in our solar system that may host life as we know it – and perhaps, even own human colonies in the future. The idea of a Martian, an inhabitant of Mars, appeared as early as 1877, the same year that the moons of Mars were discovered.
But before we explore what a human colony on Mars would look like, here’s a rundown of the notable highlights of Mars exploration and events:
As for future missions, humans have big plans for Mars. Next summer, NASA’s Mars 2020 rover is set to comb the Red Planet for signs of life, as will the European-Russian ExoMars rover. In 2022, The European Space Agency plans on launching the Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (JUICE), which will explore the giant planet’s icy moons – Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto. Their mission? To find out whether the moons are appropriate for the existence of life.
Elon Musk and his company SpaceX plans a crewed mission to Mars in 2024, with the objective of laying the groundwork for a Mars base from which they “can build a thriving city and eventually a self-sustaining civilization on Mars”. He also recently revealed plans for his Starship craft, which is designed to carry up to 100 crew members on interplanetary journeys throughout the solar system. It’s all still hypothetical, and while Musk has the finances and resources to attempt such a wild project, there are some concerns over the potential consequences of human reach. Some of the issues include contaminating any potential life on Mars with bacteria from Earth, and also the fact that Mars lacks a magnetic field, which would leave humans unprotected from radiation. Food is another issue, since the desert-like terrain of Mars isn’t well-suited for farming. As an answer, some have posited that lab-grown meat and insects could be potential nutritional sources for those living on Mars.
While a future life on Mars is still all speculation at this point, there will (probably) at least be the Internet: Musk also has a Starlink project, which consists of 12,000 satellites that will “net the skies and provide internet to every person in every place on the planet – and to future Mars settlers.”
If you’re impatient or if the idea of eating insects does not appeal, you can explore the planet that will potentially host a future human colony in your own hands with our beautiful MARS Pro without waiting or eating lab-grown meat. Our MARS AR Notebook also features the Martian landscape in 3D.