FORGET THE MOON. NEXT STOP: MARS!
Mars Rovers have been visiting Mars for a while now from NASA. But in 2020, The space agency is going to send a rover to the red planet with the first blueprint for colonisation. More specifically, it will make oxygen on Mars’s surface, and it will look for farmland which human beings can till.
This sounds like science fiction, but the people at NASA convince us that it is possible. ‘The 2020 rover will help answer questions about the Martian environment that astronauts will face and test technologies they need before landing on, exploring and returning from the Red Planet,’ said NASA’s William Gerstenmaier, who works on human missions.
This will also include experiments which will attempt to convert the carbon-dioxide abundantly present in Mars’s atmosphere into oxygen that human beings could use for respiration. The rover will also be equipped to send back 3D images and spectrometers that will analyse – among other things – the chemical makeup of minerals on Mars with a view towards using them for agriculture.
‘An ability to live off the Martian land would transform future exploration of the planet,’ NASA said in a statement. The rover will also create a job for a future mission to complete, which will happen once the technology for returning to Earth emerges. The rover will send back soil samples for lab analysis.
Science fiction author Ray Bradbury wrote a book called ‘The Martian Chronicles’ way back in the middle of the twentieth century. If he had been alive today to see our first steps towards his dream, he’d have been happy indeed.