Are there people on Mars

Historical Review: The Dream of Humans on Mars

Even before the US space agency NASA was founded in 1958, there were initial plans for a manned flight. US presidents from George Bush Sr. to Donald Trump talked about sending people to Mars. The announcements have not yet been implemented. The expedition to the Red Planet could look like this:

The arrival

The journey from Earth to Mars takes about seven months. The private space companies SpaceX and Blue Origin are in the process of building rockets that could carry tens of thousands of tons of material to Mars. On the long flight, the astronauts are exposed to extreme stresses from radiation and weightlessness, for example they suffer from muscle wasting. But the hardships are considered manageable.

The stay

The astronauts would have to stay on Mars for 15 months before the red planet and earth are on the same side of the sun again. It is extremely cold on Mars, with an average of minus 63 degrees. There are already protective suits and dwellings in which people can survive in such temperatures.

Medical emergencies are a risk because the distance is too great to evacuate the sick. In order to keep this danger as low as possible, the genes of the spacemen are examined, as well as the medical history of their family. In this way it can be largely ruled out that a participant will develop cancer in the course of the expedition.

For other diseases - such as broken bones or kidney stones - doctors are developing ways in which astronauts can treat themselves, for example with a robot-controlled hypodermic needle. Appendicitis could still be fatal on Mars, but the appendix could be removed as a precautionary measure on Earth.

One of the challenges of a manned mission is the violent dust storms on Mars. The dust can hide the sun for months, causing solar panels to stop working. In order to still ensure the energy supply, the crew had small nuclear reactors in their luggage. Some utensils could be made on site from material from Mars with 3D printers.

Mars colonies

Some visionaries already envision a permanent settlement on Mars. Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk wants to use a first Mars expedition to build a factory that converts Martian water and carbon dioxide into oxygen and methane fuel. The President of the Mars Society, Robert Zubrin, wants to create "new offshoots of human civilization" on the planet. Others, however, warn against the illusion of a "planet B".

The “Mars 2020” mission with “Perseverance” is intended to help pave the way for manned Mars missions. The plan is to develop a system to extract vital oxygen from the Martian atmosphere, which consists mainly of carbon dioxide.