NASA proposes artificial magnetic field to make Mars a second home

Adjust Comment Print

This theory has been reinforced in recent years by orbiters such as NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution Mission (MAVEN), which have been studying the Martian atmosphere. At the workshop, NASA's Planetary Science Division director Jim Green Called it feasible that high enough magnetic field strengths can be attained, which are necessary in providing that shielding. The planet is similar to Earth in many ways, too - a Martian day is 24 hours, 39 minutes and 35.244 seconds, Mars' surface area is 28.4% of Earth's (only slightly less than the amount of dry land on Earth), and the planet's similar axial tilt means it has seasons much like Earth's - although they are almost twice as long, as a Martian year is about 1.88 Earth years.

Scientists at the United States Space Agency NASA are from the viewpoint that an artificial shield of the magnet can make the Red Planet habitable.

The Magnetotail refers to the wide elongated extension of the earth's magnetosphere on the side facing away from the Sun. Instead of a magnetosphere surrounding Mars, the magnetosphere at L1 will protect Mars from the ravages of the solar wind by enveloping the entire planet in the "magnetotail".

Eventually this would restore the atmosphere, warming up the planet and creating a protective layer.

By the time mankind launch the magnetic field - which won't happen before 2050 at least - humans will, Dr. Bamford suggests, already be visiting Mars regularly, with crews establishing infrastructure and building colonies.

"It has been determined that an average change in the temperature of Mars of about four degrees Celsius will provide enough temperature to melt the Carbon dioxide veneer over the northern polar cap", the presentation revealed.

Mars is an inhospitable world with an atmosphere that has been stripped away over billions of years.

"Perhaps one-seventh of the ancient ocean could return to Mars", said Green.

Green said: "The solar system is ours, let's take it".

Although Mars has the reputation of being a cold, arid wasteland, the planet is believed to have once had a thick atmosphere that could have sustained deep oceans filled with liquid water.

While the team acknowledges that the concept might sound "fanciful", they point to existing miniature magnetosphere research being conducted to protect astronauts and spacecraft from cosmic radiation, and think that the same technology on a larger scale could be used to shield Mars. That, of course, includes Mars and for humans to be able to explore Mars...we need a better environment. Researchers at NASA proposed creating a giant magnetic shield around the planet that would create an atmosphere slightly more hospitable to humans, enabling our species to colonize it. The planet also had a magnetic field similar to what we have on our planet today.

To test their idea, the team ran a series of simulations using their "artificial magnetosphere".

Comments