How close is Mars to Become Humanity’s Home?

Mars has always attracted the attention of the media as well as the scientific community as a potential expansion target for humankind. In the scenario of a potential worldwide fallout, or just for colonizing purposes, scientists have always looked at Mars as a “second home” within the solar system and studied its soil and atmosphere to learn if it’s possible to live there.

Scientists have found that Mars and Earth are actually very different planets when it comes to temperature, size and atmosphere, but their geological processes surprisingly similar:

While Mars is only about half of Earth’s diameter, both have roughly the same amount of dry land surface area - only because more than two-thirds of the Earth’s surface is covered by water - a somewhat important element for human survival. Although water may have once existed on Mars’ surface, it disappeared long ago or is found frozen on the planet’s north polar caps.

Another essential element for human life (or roughly any life on Earth) is oxygen, which Mars’ atmosphere contains only 1%, compared to Earth’s 21%. The atmosphere is also a lot thinner than Earth’s, allowing cosmic radiation to hit the surface unimpeded - potentially damaging any form of life on the planet.

So, let’s say it’s difficult, if not impossible, to find any colonies on Mars’ surface…but what if we did? Well, humans would have to celebrate New Year’s Eve every 687 days, adapt to Mars’ average temperature of -81 degrees (compared to Earth’s 57 degrees) and put up with a gravity of 0.37% compared of the Earth’s!

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