Mars has always been an interest to science fiction writers of the past and present, myself included. Something about our other “sister” planet seems to attract our attention, maybe it’s the possibility of a chance for life other than our own.

Indeed, scientists have agreed more recently that water did in fact flow on Mars at one point and it was possibly warmer than it is now. They also state, however, that because of the deterioration of it’s atmosphere and other factors, life didn’t have a chance.

Our most famous rendition of Mars is of course HG Wells War of the Worlds. Who could forget this futuristic classic from the nineteenth century. One of my more recent favorites is “Mars Attacks!” I know it’s hoaky and a little ridiculous, but I’ve always been a fan of Jack Nicholson, and I love it when he says to the Martian leader before he’s zapped,”Can’t we all just get along?”

This week the series is about the red planet and its history, exploration, and what is to happen next on this alien neighbor. Below is a link on the history of Mars, explaining it from an observational perspective.

Martian History and Facts

Pictures of Mars

MARS MISSION1detlev-van-ravenswaay-martian-dust-devils
When did we start exploring Mars, and what prompted us to do so? We reached the moon in 1969,and then we stopped going further. Was it because of the great distance between the worlds, or the fact that it was just not worth it to send people there?

It is probably for both reasons, but that is why we turned to simpler forms of transportation such as the Mariner, Viking and the voyager series. The voyager is still out there transmitting information, now on the vast region of interstellar space. Some of the best pictures of Mars to date were taken by these two probes.

After that, there were the rovers, which completely changed our aspect of what the red planet was like. We could actually see the weather conditions on Mars as they occurred, which is something we weren’t able to do until recently.

Then there is the story of the face on Mars, which personally I believe is as NASA says it is-light shadowing of a rock formation. These kind of optical illusions happen all the time right here on Earth. It all has to do with our perception of things we see. That it is not to say that there couldn’t be life on Mars in some form of microscopic microbe. These kind of organisms are all over our planet in all types of environment, even in methane.

Today’s focus is on NASA’s exploration of Mars. Below are links from the Mariner, Voyager, and Rovers containing pictures and other useful information.

Ever wonder what the weather is like on Mars. Well, for one thing, the air is much thinner than ours and made from carbon dioxide. There is also no magnetic belt, which makes it vulnerable to radiation. There are raging dust storms and tornadoes of dust that are almost ten miles high.

Nice place for a vacation, huh? Although it is an inhospitable place now, there is hope for the future that it can be colonized by using its own natural resources.

Today we will look at some these dust storms and other details of the weather on Mars. Below are a couple of links:
MARS COLONYdetlev-van-ravenswaay-martian-sunrise

Today is the last installment of my Martian Series.
We look to the future of the red planet today, and what we intend to do with it. As yesterday’s link revealed, there is a plan to colonize the red neighbor by 2025. Whether or not that will happen is anyone’s guess.

The sheer amount of time that will pass to get there is a challenge. Sure we can stay up in space for periods of a year, but that’s orbiting our own planet with emergency resources readily available. Once we leave the safety of our planet, we are literally on our own.

Will we find a way to survive long periods of time in space? One way is cryogenics, if we ever figure out how to do it. Currently, we have some advanced technology, but not enough to call ourselves technologically advanced. What will our next step be? Check these links and find out.

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