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    How to Give Mars an Atmosphere, Maybe

    The plan for an artificial Martian magnetosphere may sound “fanciful,” but researchers say that emerging research is starting to show that a miniature magnetosphere can be used to protect humans and spacecraft.NASA Earth is most fortunate to have vast webs of magnetic fields surrounding it. Without them, much of our atmosphere would have been gradually […]

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    The Psychological Challenges of Just Getting to Mars

    Though space may be the quintessential I.C.E. environment, Musk appears to be aiming to make trips to Mars—aspirationally scheduled to commence in 2024—as far away from I.C.E.-y as possible.Photograph by NASA Life outside Earth has its own Hobbesian description: isolated, confined, and extreme—or I.C.E. “Space is the quintessential ICE environment,” according to a 2018 paper, published […]

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    The Psychological Challenges of Just Getting to Mars

    Though space may be the quintessential I.C.E. environment, Musk appears to be aiming to make trips to Mars—aspirationally scheduled to commence in 2024—as far away from I.C.E.-y as possible.Photograph by NASA Life outside Earth has its own Hobbesian description: isolated, confined, and extreme—or I.C.E. “Space is the quintessential ICE environment,” according to a new paper, […]

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    How to Give Mars an Atmosphere, Maybe

    The plan for an artificial Martian magnetosphere may sound “fanciful,” but researchers say that emerging research is starting to show that a miniature magnetosphere can be used to protect humans and spacecraft.NASA Earth is most fortunate to have vast webs of magnetic fields surrounding it. Without them, much of our atmosphere would have been gradually […]

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    The Argument Against Terraforming Mars

    When it comes to the ethics of actions, such as the decision to terraform Mars, we should ask: What sort of person would do that—a virtuous or vicious one?Photograph by Kees Veenenbos / Science Photo Library In Kim Stanley Robinson’s science-fiction Mars Trilogy, human colonists “terraform” Mars, turning the rocky red planet into a lush […]

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    There’s Mysteriously Large Amounts of Methane on Mars

    The mystery isn’t just that we see methane when we shouldn’t. It’s also that, in a sense, we see too much of it. If you want to detect life on another planet, look for biomarkers—spectroscopic signatures of chemicals that betray the activity of living things. And in fact we may have already found a biomarker. […]

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    Make Mars Great Again

    How to terraform a room-temperature Mars in 100 years.

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    The Romantic Venus We Never Knew

    Venus used to be as fit for life as Earth.

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    The Martians Are Coming—and They’re Human

    How settling Mars could create a new human species.

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    19th-Century Code Helps 21st-Century Mars Rover Find Its Way

    Back in the 1840s, Morse code was a ground-breaking approach for sending messages over a hot, new communications medium called the electrical telegraph. Earlier this year, the last telegram ever was sent, yet Morse code is not entirely out of a job. NASA’s cutting-edge Curiosity Mars rover, built by JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratory), uses this […]