Questions tagged [mars]

Questions about the science or exploration of the planet Mars. See wiki for related tags.

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Could we see someone walking on Mars from Earth?

Can any telescope be capable to see some one walking on Mars? How much time dilation would there be? What is the theoretical best resolution?
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How unreachable are Jupiter's moons from Mars with the technology developed for going to Mars?

Jupiter's moons in their closest point to Mars (when Jupiter is closest to the sun) are like 7 times the distance between Earth and Mars, and in a return journey they will farther away. Is there any ...
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Are there any plans to establish depots in space?

Fuel weight is a major limitation on the range of manned spacecraft. It might make sense to pre-position fuel tanks (establish depot/depots) in orbit with different planets and moons to serve as ...
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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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Why don't we take the shortest route to Mars?

As far as i understand we are going on a route shown in the picture. When we can actually let Mars do the travelling for us and just take the short route and wait for Mars to arrive... Won't that be ...
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What's the reasonable “window” in days for a Mars-Earth Hohmann transfer?

As any popular science reader knows, when traveling between Earth and Mars, there's a Hohmann transfer opportunity about every two years (I believe it's every 26 months, specifically). What I've ...
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Will Perseverance be captured into Mars orbit before descent or would it be a direct descent into the atmosphere?

Will Perseverance be captured into Mars orbit before descent or would it be a direct descent into the atmosphere similar to an aerocapture maneuver? It would be helpful if someone could add any ...
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How will the crew exit Starship when it lands on Mars?

When SpaceStarship lands Mars, the crew will be almost 50 meters above the surface. How will they get out with all their equipment?
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Does NASA have any plans for future Mars rovers after Curiosity?

Curiosity should last a very long time - up to around 14 years. My question is whether NASA has any plans for a Mars rovers after Curiosity. If so, are any specifics known?
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Has Curiosity started driving backwards yet?

I'm curious if curiosity has started to drive backwards, at least occasionally, as part of an effort to reduce the rate of damage to the wheels. This has come up after writing this answer to the ...
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How big would a manned ascent stage for Mars need to be?

For a manned mission to Mars that isn't a one-way trip, we'll need an ascent stage that can reach orbit from Mars' surface. How big would this need to be to transport e.g. 3 astronauts to orbit? We've ...
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Between a space elevator on Mars versus the Moon, which would have lower material strength requirement?

On one hand, the Moon has lower gravity, and the gravity from Earth also reduces the distance the it has to span. This is particularly true for EML-1, and a little less so for EML-2. I don't know if ...
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The Chinese Mars rover and lander can be seen in the same picture. What device took the photo?

The China Space News Agency published an image showing the Chinese Mars rover and lander in the same photograph. What camera took the picture? Source: CNSA
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How cold is the Martian sky at night? Or the day for that matter?

If you take a simple infrared "thermometer" which is actually a lot like a bolometer and point it at a clear sky, it says "cold!" because in the wavelength range that it's using (...
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Are there any proposals for a permanent orbital interplanetary ferry?

I believe I read in a book once a description of a kind of interplanetary ferry that would orbit the sun and regularly pass different planets like Mars and Earth. The idea of the ferry is to have a ...
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Is there an end-of-life policy for Martian satellites?

When a terrestrial satellite nears the end of its useful life, it is often de-orbited to burn up in the atmosphere or sent up into a graveyard orbit. This is done to prevent the satellite from being ...
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How strong is the electric charge capacity of Martian dust storms?

In my answer to What would it feel like to be in a Martian dust storm? I assert that Martian dust storms would be best avoided, and as one of the reasons (besides carrying corrosive chemicals like ...
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Are there microclimates with better weather conditions on Mars?

On Earth, a microclimate mostly refers to an area which differs from the surrounding areas in temperature or humidity. And what about Mars ? Are there places with atmospheric conditions that are less ...
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Why NASA's sudden renewed (apparently) interest in Wax hybrid engines? Which property is so attractive now?

update: This answer links to Larry Russel Kellogg which links to NASA Tests Environmentally Friendly Rocket Fuel where images of Test firing of new Paraffin-Based Fuel at NASA Ames Research Center 1/...
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Why do you need a heat shield on Mars entry if the atmosphere is so thin?

Mars' atmosphere is only .088 psi. Is that enough to cause heat at high altitude? Shouldn't you be able to fly close to the surface at orbital speeds like on the moon? How does a parachute work with ...
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What will become of the two cubesats deployed as part of the Insight mission?

So as part of the Insight mission, two Cubesats were also launched to relay data during landing (so data can be obtained if something goes wrong) What becomes of these satellites once their primary ...
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Why use a Mars orbital Earth return vehicle for sample return?

NASA's plan is to use two separate missions to bring home the drill core samples that the Perseverance rover will take. The samples will in plan be picked up by a landed mission and launched to Mars ...
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Boiling ponds and pools on Mars?

In the related questions Can you take a bath on Mars? & How would swimming on Mars feel, given the lower gravity? we learn that bathing and swimming on Mars is much like it is on Earth. Some ...
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Could Curiosity dig itself a burrow?

Technically speaking, given enough mission time and operator attention... Could Curiosity dig itself a burrow? How long would that take? What would be the technique for that? Has it already seen a ...
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How are the Mars Rovers maintained?

I am really curious in finding out how the Mars Rovers are maintained. The communications with the software could be done as long as there are no connection malfunctions, and I suppose they have a ...
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What is the least energetic trajectory design to send uncrewed supplies to Mars?

Both Mars One and NASA have suggested sending uncrewed supply ships to Mars as part of a manned mission or colonization. These payloads can take all the time they like, not being constrained by human ...
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Would it be possible to “fall off” Phobos? [closed]

Phobos (one of Mars' moons) has the following dimensions: 27 × 22 × 18 km. It has low mass, and little or no gravity/atmosphere. Let's just assume that it's possible to walk around on Phobos without ...
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What existing life on Earth is best suited for the Martian environment?

What existing life on Earth is best suited for the Martian environment? By best suited, I mean it could theoretically be placed on Mars and easily adapt or thrive within the existing environment the ...
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Does Mars contain materials that could be used to build a space colony?

If a manned mission to mars was made with the hope of colonization, we would probably need to make many of our structures there out of materials found there - they would probably be simply too heavy ...
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Making propellants on Mars: Why not just LH2/LOX instead of methane?

In this cool video of a presentation about SpaceX's GPU-based computational fluid dynamics, there is a slide early on about making rocket fuel on Mars - specifically using water from the ground and ...
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How precise are our Mars landings?

The idea of surface rendezvous for supply missions to a Mars expedition (either before or after arrival of a manned expedition) seems to come up every now and then. This would allow a manned ...
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What risk management options are available for Mars orbiters and rovers to mitigate threat of impacting with Siding Spring cometary debris?

I was reading this article on New Scientist titled Fiercest meteor shower on record to hit Mars via comet. Long story short, the Oort cloud comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring is predicted to near-miss Mars ...
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Why is the Karman line for Mars defined higher than for Earth?

In an answer to a similar question, the Karman Line for Mars is stated as being at 125km compared to 122km for Earth. However, Mars has an atmospheric pressure about 1/10 that of Earth, its ...
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Why make Ingenuity survive some “brutally cold Martian nights” before its first attempt at flight?

NASA's Perseverance Mars Rover tweeted: Ingenuity, the Mars Helicopter I carry, is working as expected. I’m currently charging it, but once I set it down, it’ll rely solely on its solar panels. If it ...
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What are the lines on the wheels of the Perseverance rover called? Are they different than Curiosity's?

CNET's NASA narrows down Mars 2020 rover names: Hello, Fido? includes the image below. I'm not sure if the rover is moving and a rolling shutter was in use, or if the lines on the wheels are really ...
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Can the rovers on Mars see the comet flyby?

Within a few days Comet ISON is going to make a close flyby of Mars. Will the rovers on Mars have a chance to take a look at the comet as it approaches Mars?
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What are the physiological changes that would result from living in Mars gravity for years together?

Elon Musk talks a lot about Mars. Once a Mars colony is established, we should be able to make a trip to/from Mars every two years when the planets align. However, Mars' gravity is 38% that of the ...
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Why should the Mars 2020 rover drop drilled cores along its route to be picked up later?

The Mars 2020 rover will drill up real cores decimeter or so deep, in order for them to be returned to Earth by a follow up mission. I hear NASA people now seriously working on having that rover drop ...
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How much iron is on the surface of Mars?

It's (relatively) common knowledge that Mars is known as the "Red Planet" because of an abundance of iron oxide, AKA rust, on its surface. At first glance, that looks like "iron, iron, everywhere." ...
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What's the role of the chainmail and scale armor on InSight's WTS?

It's like taken directly from a medieval armor... The role of wind and thermal shield (WTS) deployed over the seismometer is in its name - protecting it from noise and thermal changes. This is fairly ...
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Are there any possible methods 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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Is it true that nuclear rockets cut the journey to Mars in half?

The biggest challenge of our Mars journey is the journey time (9 months). Now I have seen news coming stating that atomic or nuclear rockets would cut the journey time in half. Is that right? When I ...
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GPS / Iridium for human presence on Mars?

If we assume that humans will eventually visit (if not colonize) Mars, and we consider the benefits to terrestrial navigation and communication of the GPS and Iridium systems... Would a precursor to ...
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Is there independent evidence that China landed a robot on Mars in May 2021?

I would like to know if there is independent evidence of any kind that China landed a robot on Mars in May 2021? As of May 16, 2021, the last news on CNSA (China National Space Administration) site is ...
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Is there any chance that Opportunity might still recover from the dust storm?

So, with today's announcement, Opportunity was basically declared dead When the dust storm originally engulfed Opportunity last year, mission scientists were hopeful that they might yet recover the ...
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Are there any major flaws with the Mars Architecture used in the Martian?

In the movie The Martian, a giant spacecraft known as the Hermes is used to ferry astronauts from Earth orbit to Mars' orbit. Once in Mars orbit, the astronauts take a Mars descent vehicle to a pre-...
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What is the day/night cycle at the north pole of Mars?

Here on Earth, we have polar nights and midnight suns at our planet's poles. In terms of Sols, what would the day/night cycle on Mars be for a colony situated at the north pole?
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Current maximum bandwidth between Mars and Earth?

What is the current maximum bandwidth between Mars and Earth (at their closest), accounting for any satellite/prober/orbiter that is either at Mars or already launched and en route? So far I've found ...
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Will InSight be able to pick up vibrations from the landing of Perseverance or Tianwen?

In roughly six months, two spacecrafts will be landing on Mars. Will the seismometers on InSight be able to detect vibrations from any of those landings?
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Differences in the design of a commercial Moon rover and a commercial Mars rover?

News in May, 2018: Spaceflight Now NASA cancels lunar rover, shifts focus to commercial moon landers Washington Post Stunning scientists, NASA’s only moon rover just got canceled Space.com NASA Kills ...

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