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OT true - These three "killer apps" could help humans colonize Mars
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a425couple
2017-04-05 01:50:25 UTC
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By Tracy Staedter Space.com April 3, 2017, 6:50 PM
These three "killer apps" could help humans colonize Mars

Successfully colonizing the Red Planet will depend on three key
technologies, or "killer apps," an expert said at a recent panel.

Those technologies will make it possible to get supplies to a potential Mars
colony, said Philip Metzger, a planetary scientist at the University of
Central Florida and a co-founder of NASA Kennedy Space Center's Swamp Works
laboratory.

"I don't think there's really a viable case for colonizing Mars until after
we after we get a supply chain established," he said. [How Will a Human Mars
Base Work? NASA's Vision in Images]

This supply chain, Metzger said, will consist of three "killer apps" -
profitable ventures that could serve as the economic stepping-stones to the
Red Planet.

"Just like email - and, later, Facebook - were killer apps that made the
internet economically viable, so there will be particular uses of space that
will make the space industry economically viable," Metzger told Space.com.
The killer apps he identified are mining asteroids for spacecraft
propellant, building gigantic antennas in space to address Earth's
exponentially growing internet data needs and beaming clean energy to Earth.

Metzger was speaking as part of the "Sustainable Expansion: Reaching Mars
and Beyond" panel at the New Space Age Conference held on March 11 at the
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Sloan School of Management.
Is a human colony on Mars feasible?
Play Video
Is a human colony on Mars feasible?

Panel members also included Jeffrey Hoffman, former NASA astronaut and
director of MIT's Man Vehicle lab; Keegan Kirkpatrick, founder and team lead
of RedWorks; and Mark Jernigan, associate director of the Human Health and
Performance Directorate at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston. The panel
discussed the economics of colonizing Mars.

There's some intrigue surrounding who will be the first to put boots on
Mars, as NASA aims to get astronauts to the vicinity of the Red Planet in
the 2030s, and a handful of other entities, such as Elon Musk's SpaceX, are
drawing up their own Mars plans.

But it's best not to regard the effort as a race, NASA officials and other
experts have stressed; for a permanent Red Planet colony to succeed, they
have said, slow and steady might be the best pace. That slow pace will allow
government and private entities to set up the necessary supply chain.

Metzger is pretty confident about the viability of the three supply-chain
technologies, because he's spent the last decade or so keeping a list of
every idea anyone has suggested for making money in space.

"The craziest one I heard was to put a retirement home on the moon. That
way, when people fall, they won't break their hip, [because they'll be] in
low gravity," he explained to the conference attendees. "I don't see that
one surviving."
Killer app #1: Mining asteroids for propellant

Mining asteroids has a business case right now, said Metzger. That case
revolves around conventional satellites that use electric thrusters after
launch to get into their geostationary orbits, located some 22,000 miles
(35,400 kilometers) above the planet. That trip can take anywhere from six
to 12 months. During that time, the satellite company is spending money on
overhead costs and not making any revenue, Metzger said.

Asteroid mining offers a solution to that unused time, he said. A spacecraft
would excavate the rocky material on an asteroid and then extract the water
molecules that are chemically bound to the rock's clay minerals. Next, the
craft would deliver the collected water to an orbiting depot, where the
water would be split into its constituent hydrogen and oxygen, which can be
used as rocket fuel. A space tug would then collect the fuel and rendezvous
with a recently launched satellite, where the tug would inject the fuel and
boost the satellite into its final orbit. [How Asteroid Mining Could Work
(Infographic)]
Mars rover Curiosity: Images from the Red Planet
Mars rover Curiosity: Images from the Red Planet

If that boost can be done in less than a week, a satellite company would
save hundreds of millions of dollars, Metzger said.

He said he has calculated the estimated cost of building the asteroid-mining
spacecraft, the cost of the fuel depot, the cost of the space tug and the
cost of operating all three of them. "Within a range of parameters, it comes
out profitable," Metzger said.

Luxembourg has begun working on a similar project. The nation - the home
base of SES, one of the world's largest satellite operators - announced
plans last June to spend $223 million U.S. on asteroid-mining initiatives.
Killer app #2: 3D-printed space antennas

Humanity's demand for internet data doubles every 10.5 months. In about a
decade, this demand will overtake capacity, and companies won't be able to
lay new fiber-optic cables fast enough to keep up, Metzger said. Some
companies, including SpaceX and OneWeb, are moving forward with plans to
launch thousands of small internet satellites into low-Earth orbit, about
750 miles (1,200 km) up, to keep data flowing.

In low-Earth orbit, satellites move faster than the planet spins, never
staying over the same location for very long. That means these low-Earth
data satellites would have to hand off data to satellites coming up from
behind. Because thousands of these satellites would work as a network, and
because they would have limited capacity, the entire fleet would have to be
replaced at the same time to handle increases in data.

"This solution is going to get us another couple of decades of internet, but
it's not going to be a final solution," Metzger said.

He said he envisions giant space-based internet antennas 3D-printed from
metal ore mined from asteroids. The technology for 3D printing objects in
space is already being developed. With the help of a $20 million NASA
contract, California-based company Made In Space is working with Northrop
Grumman and Oceaneering Space Systems on a project called Archinaut, which
aims to build a 3D printer that will assemble a large, complex structure in
space by 2018.

A space-economy road map from United Launch Alliance (ULA), a joint venture
between Lockheed Martin and Boeing, supports the viability of 3D-printed
systems as well, suggesting that asteroid mining and space-based
manufacturing could come online within the next five years. By 2045, ULA
aims to have 1,000 people living and working in space, generating $2.7
trillion in revenue, company representatives have said.
Elon Musk's vision of life on Mars
Play Video
Elon Musk's vision of life on Mars

The 3D-printed antennas would circle Earth in a geostationary orbit, that
sweet spot about 22,000 miles up where objects move at the same rate as the
planet spins. Each internet satellite would therefore be "fixed" over one
location on Earth. If the data requirements for a particular city - Chicago,
for example -increased, then satellites could be adjusted to split their
beams and provide more capacity, Metzger said. [3D Printing in Space: A New
Dimension (Photo Gallery)]

Ideally, the antennas would work as part of a multitiered system in which
high-priority requests could be routed through fiber optics and low-Earth
satellites, while less urgent needs could flow through geosynchronous
satellites, he said.

"I've run the numbers on this. We could build a system in geosynchronous
orbit that would provide 40 billion times today's data rate, which would
supply Earth's demands all the way until the end of the century," Metzger
said.

And companies could earn revenue doing this, he added. The internet is a
trillion-dollar industry that's doubling every 10.5 months, Metzger said.

"Even if you capture [just] a small fraction of that industry within 30
years, you can achieve this $2.7 trillion target that United Launch Alliance
is aiming for," he said.
Killer app #3: Beaming clean power to Earth

Solving Earth's data demand won't solve all of humanity's computing
problems, however. A report last year by the Semiconductor Industry
Association and Semiconductor Research Corporation concluded that, by 2040,
computers will use up all of the available energy on the planet. Humanity
therefore needs to look beyond Earth for a sustainable energy source.

In 2012, John Mankins received funding from the NASA Innovative Advanced
Concepts program to develop his idea for an orbiting array of thin, movable
mirrors that would beam solar power to Earth.
Can potatoes really grow on Mars?
Play Video
Can potatoes really grow on Mars?

Mankins - a former scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and now the
president of Artemis Innovation Management Solutions in Santa Maria,
California - proposed that the array's components be manufactured on Earth
and then launched into space. But that could cost trillions up front, making
it difficult for the project to attract investors, Metzger said.
Manufacturing the system in space could be the most economical approach, he
added.

"If we do the first killer app, propellant mining, then that leads into the
second killer app, which is making large antennas in space," said Metzger.
"We will reach the point that we can build these space based-solar-power
systems without having to launch everything."

By that point, the space-based economic engine will be humming along. People
will then be able to diversify, he said. More infrastructure and more
industries would then be able to move into space, making it less necessary
to launch supplies into orbit, Metzger said.

"Eventually, you get a complete supply chain," he said.

And the more industry there is in space, he said, the easier it will be to
build spacecraft to colonize Mars.

"I'm very optimistic about this," Metzger said.

You can follow Tracy Staedter at her website tracystaedter.com and
@tracy_staedter. Follow us @Spacedotcom, Facebook and Google+. Original
article on Space.com.
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Exploration

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/these-three-killer-apps-could-help-humans-colonize-mars/
a425couple
2017-04-05 02:04:25 UTC
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Post by a425couple
By Tracy Staedter Space.com April 3, 2017, 6:50 PM
These three "killer apps" could help humans colonize Mars
Successfully colonizing the Red Planet will depend on three key
technologies, or "killer apps," an expert said at a recent panel.
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/these-three-killer-apps-could-help-humans-colonize-mars/
Here are a series of 12 photos of:
How Does a Human Mars Base Work?
(and a click to watch the full video.)

http://www.space.com/33123-nasa-human-mars-base-concept-images.html

I am somewhat surprised that none of these show
them digging down to live in 'the basement'.
Sure seems like a natural to me.
Cryptoengineer
2017-04-05 02:21:17 UTC
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Post by a425couple
Post by a425couple
By Tracy Staedter Space.com April 3, 2017, 6:50 PM
These three "killer apps" could help humans colonize Mars
Successfully colonizing the Red Planet will depend on three key
technologies, or "killer apps," an expert said at a recent panel.
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/these-three-killer-apps-could-help-humans-
colonize-mars/
How Does a Human Mars Base Work?
(and a click to watch the full video.)
http://www.space.com/33123-nasa-human-mars-base-concept-images.html
I am somewhat surprised that none of these show
them digging down to live in 'the basement'.
Sure seems like a natural to me.
In the recent series 'Mars' on National Geographic Channel, finding
a suitable cave in which erect their long-term shelter was a major
challenge faced by the voyagers in the early episodes.

pt
a425couple
2017-04-05 15:18:54 UTC
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Post by Cryptoengineer
Post by a425couple
Post by a425couple
By Tracy Staedter Space.com April 3, 2017, 6:50 PM
These three "killer apps" could help humans colonize Mars
Successfully colonizing the Red Planet will depend on three key
technologies, or "killer apps," an expert said at a recent panel.
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/these-three-killer-apps-could-help-humans-
colonize-mars/
How Does a Human Mars Base Work?
(and a click to watch the full video.)
http://www.space.com/33123-nasa-human-mars-base-concept-images.html
I am somewhat surprised that none of these show
them digging down to live in 'the basement'.
Sure seems like a natural to me.
In the recent series 'Mars' on National Geographic Channel, finding
a suitable cave in which erect their long-term shelter was a major
challenge faced by the voyagers in the early episodes.
Yes, in that series. Also in many other sf written and future
prediction books such as "Red Mars" (powerful bulldozers).
Humans need protection from radiation, extreme temperature
ranges, and protection of their atmospheric pressure.
A thick layer of either regolith or rock seems dandy.

By the way, why are we not seeing/reading anything about
flying drones with camaras being used to explore Mars?
The atmosphere is thin, but gravity is weak. It sure seems
like the earth used drones have plenty of extra flying capacity.
Use a solar powered recharging station.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mars_aircraft

Here we go! From JPL!!
https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?feature=4457
January 22, 2015
Helicopter Could Be 'Scout' for Mars Rovers
A proposed helicopter could triple the distances that Mars rovers can drive
in a Martian day and help pinpoint interesting targets for study.
Post by Cryptoengineer
Play video
Getting around on Mars is tricky business. Each NASA rover has delivered a
wealth of information about the history and composition of the Red Planet,
but a rover's vision is limited by the view of onboard cameras, and images
from spacecraft orbiting Mars are the only other clues to where to drive it.
To have a better sense of where to go and what's worth studying on Mars, it
could be useful to have a low-flying scout.

Enter the Mars Helicopter, a proposed add-on to Mars rovers of the future
that could potentially triple the distance these vehicles currently drive in
a Martian day, and deliver a new level of visual information for choosing
which sites to explore.

I mean come on!!
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_Mars_Science_Laboratory#Current_status
The rover Curiosity had to be landed in a kind of safe
spot, and has not even gone 10 miles since then!

Find those ice caves!!!!
explore
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valles_Marineris
Peter Trei
2017-04-05 16:55:46 UTC
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Post by a425couple
Post by Cryptoengineer
Post by a425couple
Post by a425couple
By Tracy Staedter Space.com April 3, 2017, 6:50 PM
These three "killer apps" could help humans colonize Mars
Successfully colonizing the Red Planet will depend on three key
technologies, or "killer apps," an expert said at a recent panel.
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/these-three-killer-apps-could-help-humans-
colonize-mars/
How Does a Human Mars Base Work?
(and a click to watch the full video.)
http://www.space.com/33123-nasa-human-mars-base-concept-images.html
I am somewhat surprised that none of these show
them digging down to live in 'the basement'.
Sure seems like a natural to me.
In the recent series 'Mars' on National Geographic Channel, finding
a suitable cave in which erect their long-term shelter was a major
challenge faced by the voyagers in the early episodes.
Yes, in that series. Also in many other sf written and future
prediction books such as "Red Mars" (powerful bulldozers).
Humans need protection from radiation, extreme temperature
ranges, and protection of their atmospheric pressure.
A thick layer of either regolith or rock seems dandy.
By the way, why are we not seeing/reading anything about
flying drones with camaras being used to explore Mars?
The atmosphere is thin, but gravity is weak. It sure seems
like the earth used drones have plenty of extra flying capacity.
Use a solar powered recharging station.
Actually, the above mentioned 'Mars' series does use aerial drones
for scouting.
Post by a425couple
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mars_aircraft
Here we go! From JPL!!
https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?feature=4457
a425couple
2017-04-05 23:01:28 UTC
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Raw Message
Post by Peter Trei
Post by a425couple
Post by Cryptoengineer
Post by a425couple
Post by a425couple
By Tracy Staedter Space.com April 3, 2017, 6:50 PM
These three "killer apps" could help humans colonize Mars
Successfully colonizing the Red Planet will depend on three key
technologies, or "killer apps," an expert said at a recent panel.
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/these-three-killer-apps-could-help-humans-
colonize-mars/
How Does a Human Mars Base Work?
(and a click to watch the full video.)
http://www.space.com/33123-nasa-human-mars-base-concept-images.html
I am somewhat surprised that none of these show
them digging down to live in 'the basement'.
Sure seems like a natural to me.
In the recent series 'Mars' on National Geographic Channel, finding
a suitable cave in which erect their long-term shelter was a major
challenge faced by the voyagers in the early episodes.
Yes, in that series. Also in many other sf written and future
prediction books such as "Red Mars" (powerful bulldozers).
Humans need protection from radiation, extreme temperature
ranges, and protection of their atmospheric pressure.
A thick layer of either regolith or rock seems dandy.
By the way, why are we not seeing/reading anything about
flying drones with camaras being used to explore Mars?
The atmosphere is thin, but gravity is weak. It sure seems
like the earth used drones have plenty of extra flying capacity.
Use a solar powered recharging station.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mars_aircraft
Here we go! From JPL!!
https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?feature=4457
Actually, the above mentioned 'Mars' series does use aerial drones
for scouting.
You are correct. I had forgotten. Thank you.

a425couple
2017-04-05 02:18:44 UTC
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Raw Message
Post by a425couple
By Tracy Staedter Space.com April 3, 2017, 6:50 PM
These three "killer apps" could help humans colonize Mars
Successfully colonizing the Red Planet will depend on three key
technologies, or "killer apps," an expert said at a recent panel.
Those technologies will make it possible to get supplies to a potential
Mars colony, said Philip Metzger, a planetary scientist at the University
of Central Florida and a co-founder of NASA Kennedy Space Center's Swamp
Works laboratory.
Is a human colony on Mars feasible?
Play Video
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/these-three-killer-apps-could-help-humans-colonize-mars/
You can also get to the 6 minute video (above) by going to
the below. It features Dr. Michio Kaku.
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/these-three-killer-apps-could-help-humans-colonize-mars/
"It's doable. But costly.
He says about $10,000 per pound to ISS.
About $1 Million per pound to Mars.
Kaku believes eventually we will be a 2 planet species."
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