NASA's Mars Journey: Next Steps For Mankind - InformationWeek

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10/11/2015
12:06 PM
Thomas Claburn
Thomas Claburn
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NASA's Mars Journey: Next Steps For Mankind

Sometime in the 2030s, NASA wants to land astronauts on Mars. Here's a look at what it will take to get us there.
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Next Steps

Two missions to Mars are planned for 2016. In March, NASA expects to launch InSight, its next Mars rover. Meanwhile, the European Space Agency and the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) are working together to launch the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter. The ESA's ExoMars Rover mission is scheduled for 2018, with NASA participating.

(Image: NASA)

Next Steps

Two missions to Mars are planned for 2016. In March, NASA expects to launch InSight, its next Mars rover. Meanwhile, the European Space Agency and the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) are working together to launch the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter. The ESA's ExoMars Rover mission is scheduled for 2018, with NASA participating.

(Image: NASA)

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Broadway0474
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Broadway0474,
User Rank: Ninja
10/23/2015 | 11:45:28 AM
Re: Benefits
kstaron, that's the key. It's a race. Can we colonize other planets before we extinct ourselves --- or get made extinct --- on Earth. That's the fire under Elon Musk, from what I've read. He doesn't think we're long for this world, and I tend to agree with him.
kstaron
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50%
kstaron,
User Rank: Ninja
10/23/2015 | 9:10:29 AM
Re: Benefits
Broadway, Here's to hoping the inventions needed to get us to and keep us on Mars are similar to the inventions needed to help us deal with climate change, over population, the lack of clean water and so on that are issues on this planet as well. New ways to recycle water, grow more food, keep more food edible longer, balance O2 levels, using clean, renewable sources of energy. All of these are needed both here and on Mars. The longer we can sustain on Earth, the longer we have to perfect the technologies to launch us into deep space.
gnxman
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gnxman,
User Rank: Guru
10/19/2015 | 12:40:28 PM
Re: Benefits
There have been many many tangible and intangible economic poliitcal and social benefits to the space program. When Kennedy said were are landing on the moon in less than 10 years, we had to invent practically everything to get there. That pressure to come up with solutions, that "can do" attitude is incalculable. We need to re-capture that spirit of "can do".
Broadway0474
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50%
Broadway0474,
User Rank: Ninja
10/13/2015 | 10:55:50 PM
Re: Benefits
Whoopty, I agree with you. Check out the interview with Elon Musk that Wait But Why did and still runs on its homepage. His whole reason for SpaceX is to allow humans to colonize other planets. Why? To ensure we survive the coming cataclysm on Earth, whether natural or man-made. Talk about "keenly important".
Whoopty
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Whoopty,
User Rank: Ninja
10/12/2015 | 7:27:37 AM
Re: Benefits
I couldnt' agree more. Not only are there a number of inventions that are now very common place that came from the space programs of the past, but I've heard it said that for every dollar spent in space-tech development, around $10 come back into the economy. 

That, and the philosophical implications made by space travel mean that the benefits of investing in it are near limitless. It really is about time the public saw space exploration as a keenly important part of modern society. 
Brian.Dean
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Brian.Dean,
User Rank: Ninja
10/12/2015 | 5:59:44 AM
Benefits
A space program can create benefits for the economy, technology and education, etc. There are a few indirect and intangible benefits that cannot be fully measured. For instance, the value of Hubble's ultra-deep field images, finding an exoplanet or discovering Methane in Mars is difficult to quantify.
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