2
$\begingroup$

Living without gravity has consequences for the bones and muscles. To counter that astronauts have to do exercise and lifting regularly when they go to the ISS.

Now are there any plans to counter this for people expected to live several years on Mars if they want to return to Earth?

Mars has gravity, so adverse effects may be less than spending the same amount of time on the ISS, but day-to-day activity in Mars' reduced gravity will certainly not load the body as much as activity on Earth.

This might be a dumb idea, but could using clothes made heavier in purpose all the time help?

$\endgroup$
2
$\begingroup$

First we must compare the surface gravities of Earth and Mars. Planet Earth has 2.63 g if we consider Martian gravity 1 g. So a Martian going to Earth is similar to an Earthling visiting Jupiter a bit closer to its poles. Humans live in the Earth's gravity for (almost) their entire lives and I think they couldn't spend days on floating cities on Jupiter since Jupiter's 2.5-2.7 g would prevent them standing up. Something similar counts for people born on Mars. If they tried to visit Earth they wouldn't be able to stand up. They'd have weaker muscles and bones. As with astronauts who visit Mars for two years (the length a manned stay on Mars is expected) I think they will eventually adapt back to Earth's gravity. Two astronauts already spent more than a year on the ISS (in weightlessness). On a Mars mission you spend 6 months in weightlessness, 2 years in 0.38 g and another 6 months in weightlessness, so I think returning from a journey to Mars is managable to the human body. Of course, the longer you spend time on Mars, the harder will the body have to re-adapt to 1 g (or 2.63 g from a perspective from Mars). But if these astronauts weren't born on Mars they would eventually re-adapt. It may take months if not years, but I'm sure they would.

$\endgroup$
  • $\begingroup$ This answer would require some formatting. $\endgroup$ – Uwe May 1 at 14:12

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.