Image: Curiosity Self Portrait with Mount Sharp at Rocknest ripple in Gale Crater. Curiosity used the Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) camera on the robotic arm to image herself and her target destination Mount Sharp in the background. Mountains in the background to the left are the northern wall of Gale Crater. This color panoramic mosaic was assembled from raw images snapped on Sol 85 (Nov. 1, 2012). Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS/Ken Kremer/Marco Di Lorenzo

Can Humans Live on Mars?

by KEN KREMER on NOVEMBER 19, 2012

Metallic robots constructed by ingenious humans can survive on Mars. But what about future human astronauts?

NASA’s plucky Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity has thrived for nearly a decade traversing the plains of Meridiani Planum despite the continuous bombardment of sterilizing cosmic and solar radiation from charged particles thanks to her radiation hardened innards.

How about humans? What fate awaits them on a bold and likely year’s long expedition to the endlessly extreme and drastically harsh environment on the surface of the radiation drenched Red Planet – if one ever gets off the ground here on Earth? How much shielding would people need?

Answering these questions is one of the key quests ahead for NASA’s SUV sized Curiosity Mars rover – now 100 Sols, or Martian days, into her 2 year long primary mission phase.

Preliminary data looks promising.

Read more: Can Humans Live on Mars? — Universe Today.

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