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Questions tagged [mars]

Questions about the science or exploration of the planet Mars.

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At the same temperature, what's the relation of speed of heat loss between Earth and Mars?

Mars has a thinner athmosphere than Earth. Let's say you have a similar shelter of the same volume and made of the same materials in Mars at -70 Celsius, and in Earth in some place in the Antarctica ...
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Shirtsleeves environment in Martian caves [duplicate]

Are there currently any places on Mars (that we know of) that are deep enough and warm enough that a human could survive with only an oxygen mask? Are there any caves, trenches, or valleys deep enough ...
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1answer
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What, if any, effect does the Martian magnetic field have on dust storms?

Since we know most dust particles on Mars are magnetic, I was wondering if they might be affected by the Martian magnetic field. Can the Martian magnetic field have any effect on the spatial ...
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Cost to move to Mars [closed]

First we must assume that Spacex continues to operate in the same way that its running. Once they start building a colony for people to visit or move to. What do you think it would cost to be one of ...
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Funding for small astrobiology fieldwork project

I am a postdoctoral scholar who plans to conduct a small project at the MDRS, a Mars simulation volunteer project. The project will be to conduct DNA sequencing of soil samples using a handheld nano ...
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Where on Mars are the known craters or collapse features with very high depth/diameter ratio?

Figure 1 of this article about craters and collapse features on Mars with high depth/diameter ratios shows that ratios higher than 0.2 are exceptional. This presentation of the Program of the Second ...
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Fast spining solar cells to clear Martian dust possible?

I've seen a fast spinning glass wheel used in front of a camera to clear away water, dust or ice. Could Solar panels be made circular and spin to clear dust off of them in the same way may? As ...
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1answer
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How are martian dust devil maps made?

The Gizmodo article A Martian Dust Devil Swept Right Over NASA’s InSight Lander says: What’s unique about this most recent event, however, is that InSight was able to gather other forms of evidence ...
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What are the biological effects of a toe-to-head force gradient upon a human over the long term?

This question pertains to the notion of constructing rotating spacecraft and habs for human use in space in order to mitigate the effects of microgravity. Such craft have been a staple of many sci-fi ...
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3answers
4k views

Could “live” video be transmitted from Mars?

With the approach of InSight to Mars today, and the two cubesats watching it, much is being made about seeing "Live Video" from the cubesats. I'm pretty sure that simply can't happen, but I'm ...
6
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1answer
131 views

How many motors on the new Mars 2020 rover? (and other questions)

With so many different motors on the new Mars 2020 rover, I'd like to ask if each motor programmed to operate independently or can the different motors operate in sync with each other? Also, as a ...
14
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1answer
524 views

How did NASA's Deep Space Network encode and broadcast music to Opportunity?

@Ingolifs's answer to the question What was the last message to Opportunity today (13 Feb '19)? quotes ArsTechnica's Opportunity did not answer NASA’s final call, and it’s now lost to us: Late ...
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1answer
253 views

Why were Spirit and Opportunity separate launches?

In reading this question (Why A=2 and B=1 in the call signs for Spirit and Opportunity?), it prompted me to wonder why Mars probes Spirit and Opportunity were launched separately, even though their ...
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1answer
246 views

Understanding Von Braun's Math: Theoretical Isp

I've just read Wernher Von Braun's Project Mars: A Technical Tale, and I'm trying to understand the math in the back. I can follow some of what he's doing, but other parts I just can't tell where his ...
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Could Martian soil be used as material for a 3d metal printer?

I know this sounds like a 3d printing question, but it is more space oriented so bear with me. My reasoning for this post is that the Martian soil is comprised mainly of iron oxide, which gives it ...
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1answer
183 views

Can we get to Mars today using current rockets/technology?

I was wondering if, using the rockets we have today (I'm guessing the most likely candidate is the Falcon Heavy), we could send at least 1 human to Mars. For arguments sake, let's ignore the fact it ...
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How does Mars have a Bow Shock and proton aurora? What is a hydrogen corona?

I just saw the NASA video Mars Proton Aurora below and I'm confused, (which by itself is unremarkable). Without a planetary magnetic field, what force produces a bow shock in the solar wind at Mars, ...
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1answer
170 views

Does Mars have badlands?

This excellent answer addresses the amazing 3D structures shown in the image below: The terrain examples show some striking similarities to what is referred to in the United States as "Badlands" - ...
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1answer
132 views

How are the most sensitive seismometers on Mars protected from the most powerful jackhammer on Mars just a few feet away?

In the image below we are supposed to be looking at the pretty clouds, but all I see is an incredibly sensitive set of seismometers sitting right next to a jackhammer that will slowly drive a metal ...
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204 views

How many sundials or sun compases are there on Mars?

According to https://www.seis-insight.eu/en/public-2/seis-instrument/rweb Sundial Around the handle is a small sundial, which enables geophysicists to estimate the azimuth— i.e. the ...
11
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1answer
140 views

Can a semipermeable greenhouse be used to extract CO2 from the Martian atmosphere and help provide oxygen to a colony without using a pump?

When doing an experiment on growing plants in sealed plastic bottles, I learned that many plastics, such as PET used for soft drinks bottles, are more permeable to CO2 than to N2 or O2 (see table 2 of ...
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3answers
780 views

How can a hefty sand storm happen in a thin atmosphere like Martian?

As perceived, sand storms on Mars are quite hefty. But how is that possible in such a thin atmosphere like Martian?
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Images of Mars Phoenix Lander showing what's happened after more cycles of winter ice build-up?

The Mars Phoenix Lander's End of Mission is an interesting story. It was left in a state such that had it survived the Mars winter of 2008, it could potentially be contacted again in 2010. The ...
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1answer
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Will people living in Mars for several years be able to return to Earth without consequences?

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 ...
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Method for keeping surface water on mars?

I've been reading this wikipedia article on terraforming mars. One of the major issues with terraforming mars is essential molecules and elements escaping the planet. There have been several ...
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1answer
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NASA says Mars' soil has the nutrients for growing plants, how about the Moon?

Okey, that's not everything they said but I can't write everything in the title. NASA says Mars's soil has the nutrients for growing plants, though there may not be the right amount depending on where ...
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About how long will Curiosity last on its nuclear power?

Curiosity, we know, has no little nuclear reactor, it has a RTG. Great! But how long will it last? For how many years will our little 1-ton friend be roaming around another planet?
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Is it possible to extend high speed data transmission with lasers to the distance Earth to Mars?

Data transmission using an optical laser between ground station and a GEO satellite may offer very high data rates, up to 1.8 GBit/s for instance. But what about a transmission from Earth to Mars ...
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1answer
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How many active or inactive artificial satellites are in Mars orbit?

I just read in the BBC news that four nations have placed satellites in Mars orbit. How many active or inactive artificial satellites are there in orbit around Mars (2014)?
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1answer
157 views

Could a Rotary Rocket charge a super capacitor while descending on Mars?

Could a rotary rocket entering the atmosphere collect enough energy in a super capacitor through the rotors (along with auto rotation) while descending to have a controlled landing in the last few ...
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1answer
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Could a solar panel be modified to also collect a static charge on Mars?

I was waiting for someone to piece both of these questions together into another question. @Dragongeek was the first, Could a solar panel be modified to create a static charge while spinning to remove ...
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2answers
138 views

How many spy satellites could be destroyed before the debris field would be too massive to launch moon or mars manned missions?

Obviously this is very statistical. Basically I'm looking for an order of magnitude. One geostationary satellite would cause a pinball effect or would it be more like 10 satellites? I'm concerned ...
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Could electricty be generated from a Martian dust storm?

This helicopter is producing static electricity from the blades moving through the dusty air. Along with the electricity provided by wind generators could additional power be created this way from ...
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Could the BFR Tanker be used as an artificial gravity counterweight for interplanetary travel?

An alternative storyline to the Mars transport architecture: Tankers refuel starship, last Tanker gets mounted on the Starship for the Mars orbital injection burn, once on a Martian trajectory tanker ...
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2answers
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Could an Igloo work on Mars?

Could ice make a good habitat like an igloo for colonists or as cold storage for fuel? Could the cavern be sealed and then carbon dioxide melted to create pressure inside the cavern to grow plants or ...
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5answers
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Why aren't we sending quadcopters to mars?

After watching the MARS series on National Geographic I noticed that they sent one of their crew members down a chasm to check for ice. I wondered, why they did not just take a regular commercial ...
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2answers
334 views

Artificial Magnetosphere to Terra-form Mars?

I was reading a 2017 article on a potential that Mars could be terraformed using a magneto-tail; A Future Mars Environment for Science and Exploration. This would basically entail sticking a giant ...
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1answer
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Puzzler: help understanding these amazing Curiosity eclipse GIFs

Starting from Curiosity Observes Sunset Eclipse: Sol 2358 I found three images in the sequence PIA23133, PIA23134, and PIA23135 which I thought would mean (but don't know for sure) that they are ...
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2answers
954 views

How could an induced magnetosphere be created at Mars for terraforming?

In the long run Mars needs a magnetic field to keep a thick atmosphere and for radiation shielding, if humanity were to terraform it. Starting a dynamo in Mars' core seems forever impossible, but a ...
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2answers
3k views

Can a rocket refuel on Mars from water?

Can a rocket run only on hydrogen and oxygen? Could a rocket, rover, and electrolysis machine be sent to either of Mars' poles to excavate ice to make hydrogen and oxygen to refuel an unmanned rocket? ...
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Would a terraformed Martian athmosphere even persist? [duplicate]

So I saw a question here mentioning that omnipresent idea of terraforming mars by somehow giving it more atmosphere (here it was melting/evaporating the polar ice caps). My problem with that is: ...
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2answers
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Can a machine process and run on $CO_2$ and $H_2O$ for an $O_2$ by product?

On Mars studies have shown that carbon dioxide solidifies to dry ice at the poles. During the winter months can electrolysis be applied to collected and then contained liquid $CO_2$ to replenish ...
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2answers
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Could a fat rocket be used on Mars?

Since Mars' atmosphere is around 2% the density of Earth's then could a much wider rocket achieve orbit? Could the rocket be in the shape of a capsule or an optimal shape for reentry on Earth?
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1answer
153 views

Do Mars rovers have irises? How do they safely look at the Sun?

This excellent answer by @MarkAdler to the question Opportunity's last tau was 10.8; what does that mean and how is tau defined and measured? explains that Curiosity uses its PanCam to image the Sun's ...
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1answer
154 views

How would this two-stage Mars Ascent Vehicle work? Where do you sit?

This curious answer shows an image of a liquid-fueled Mars Ascent Vehicle with a sign in front that only says Two Stage Mars Ascent Vehicle Question: Is there some NASA program associated with it ...
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1answer
62 views

Is there mineral nitrogen on Martian surface? [closed]

I am aware of the atmospheric composition and pressure. I am looking for research papers which state the mineral content of Martian soil.
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2answers
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Why are we trying to build a base on Mars before the Moon?

My question is very close to the question answered in the link below and is raised by the answers that question received: Is a Moon-base inherently more dangerous than a Space Station? Why are we ...
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1answer
171 views

How high could a weather balloon be used on Mars without rupturing? [duplicate]

What is the maximum height could a weather balloon achieve on Mars without rupturing? Assume that the balloon is adapted for Mars' atmosphere and gravity from standard high altitude balloons used on ...
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2answers
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Maximum height for a Mars Balloon?

The altitude record for an unmanned balloon is 53.0 kilometers. wikipedia If we use this Earth based record for an estimate of the maximum possible height of a balloon started from Mars surface, ...
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1answer
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What types of engines are able to go from Earth orbit to Martian orbit? [closed]

What engine is the most efficient in fuel and/or time to go from Earth orbit to Mars orbit and back again that are not capable of launching from the ground?