Thursday, June 7, 2012

Life on Mars

I was listening to Elvis Duran & The Morning Show on my way to a meeting this morning and the topic of conversation was the colonization of Mars.  Yes, the planet.  Apparently a company called Mars One intends to start a colony on Mars by 2023.  It's a $6+ billion dollar project which they hope to fund by creating a reality show featuring the colony of folks they put on Mars.  The disclaimer to anyone looking to sign up for the opportunity to move to Mars and be on Reality TV is that the trek is 7 months long and it's a one way trip. 

A series of thoughts went through my head.  First, how would the participants feel after lift-off knowing they could never come back?  Excited?  Panicked?  Or how about that 7 month long flight?  The longest trip I've ever made was a train to Georgia and I tell you what folks, I'm not signing up for any long train rides again.  I can't imagine a 7 month long ride in anything.  Yowza.  Then I got to thinking about how life would be in Mars.  The air isn't necessarily breathable from what I understand, so immediately I thought of that hokey movie BioDome.  Not to mention that there are no stores, no post office, no phones, no electricity, no economy or politics, no infrastructure.  Nothing the "normal" human is used to is available.  These folks would be essentially starting from scratch. What would they eat?  Would they have enough supplies to start out with? 

Maybe it was because I was driving through areas that dropped in and out of cell phone coverage, but my next thought was how would this proposed reality show be transmitted to us?  Cell phone service isn't even continuous on my forty minute commute and yet this colony is to be taped from a distance equivalent to 7 months away and broadcasted on national television?  Do we have satellites strong enough for that?  

I would imagine that if this company is completely centered around the idea of colonizing mars, they've already thought of everything.  What a momentous feat to undertake though.  I'm not going to say its not feasible.  My father always said if you can think it, you can do it.  His generation saw a man walk on the moon.  Do I dare say our generation will live to see a colony on Mars?  It's looking like it might  happen, just don't sign me up for the trip. 

Would you be willing to travel 7 months on a one-way trip to Mars to start a colony?  What are your thoughts?

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