View Poll Results: Which planet should we focus on more to terraform?

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  • Mars

    5 31.25%
  • Venus

    3 18.75%
  • Neither.

    8 50.00%
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Thread: Venus vs. Mars

  1. #21
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    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Quote Originally Posted by Septentrionalis View Post
    It is amazing how these wild fictions become a plausible reality to some when repeated enough. There will be no terraforming of anything on a planetary scale. The whole idea is ludicrous. We seem to be unable to reverse a little climate change but we could turn an entire planet with a fiery hot and crushing atmosphere and acidic rain into a nice and cozy planet like Earth? Just because someone said it would be cool doesn't make it feasible.
    This.

    Have fun reactivating the magnetosphere of Mars. Ain't gonna happen. Have fun trying to find enough subterranean water on Mars to compensate for the vast majority of it which was blasted off by solar radiation when said magnetosphere went cold. Again: Ain't gonna happen. Have fun finding the nitrogen etc. to recreate an atmosphere. Again: Not going to happen. Most atoms and molecules that used to form the Mars atmosphere have long since left the planet.

    Venus: Even better.
    Have fun terraforming a planet with a surface temperature hot enough to melt lead. Have fun doing that while the only magnetosphere on the planet comes in the shape of an electric current from the solar wind blasting away at the planet, guaranteed to roast anyone if for some magic reason the surface temperature hasn't done so already. But hey, at the very least you do have an atmosphere, 96% carbon dioxide.
    Weather prediction: Clouds of sulfuric acid and no rain because just like with Mars the solar wind has blasted off all hydrogen.

    But hey, at the very least there's gotta be something really valuable on either planets, right?! Nope. Slightly more ores, given that they haven't had humans scavenge the surfaces so far. But that's it. And it will never be profitable to extract those resources.

    Nota bene that we do have a floating rock nearby that actually does have stuff that might be valuable to us. The moon. But that still likely isn't going to make it worthwhile for us to settle there. With the vast amount of problems and difficulties that come with creating a permanent human settlement, never mind settle it permanently, it'd be much easier to just have robots do 99% of the job with human crews only stopping by if something can't be solved by any other means.

    But ok, let's say we do make that permanent settlement. Have fun adjusting to your new cavemen like sorry existence. No windows, stale air for the rest of your stay that will have the oxygen carbondioxide exchanged but with the smell accumulating constantly over time. And say you manage to create and birth offspring on that settlement (which would be quite the achievement in its own right), well that kid wouldn't be able to return to earth ever.

    Oh yeah, I forgot: Drinks and food on the menu: Your poop and urine from earlier, slightly refurbished. Also if your friend died he probably had to become fertiliser as well because you've been extremely short on that supply and can't afford a single gram of waste. MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm
    Last edited by Cookiegod; June 12, 2021 at 09:09 AM.

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  2. #22
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    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    It is much more likely that we will rely on (mostly) self-sustaining space stations one day. Like a ship in the ocean, they will travel space, harvest stuff from planets, and maybe colonize a few of them here and there. But terraforming? There will be most likely no need for that. Yet, never say never. Perhaps in the far, far future. But not in the close one.

  3. #23
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    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Quote Originally Posted by Derc View Post
    It is much more likely that we will rely on (mostly) self-sustaining space stations one day. Like a ship in the ocean, they will travel space, harvest stuff from planets, and maybe colonize a few of them here and there. But terraforming? There will be most likely no need for that. Yet, never say never. Perhaps in the far, far future. But not in the close one.
    Firstly the issue with terraforming isn't simply technical. It's a simple question of having the resources or not. You can't create water out of nothing. The necessary force to create/disassemble atoms into being is astronomical, so you have to find the already existing material. Hydrogen tends to be one of the first ingredients to be blown off into space.

    It's as much of a technological challenge as creating cookies without having any cookie ingredients, or anything needed to create cookie ingredients, or anything needed to create anything needed to create cookie ingredients, or anything needed to create anything needed to create anything needed to create cookie ingredients.

    It's fundamentally the exact same challenge as turning lead into gold, except that now you'd be trying to turn some other element into hydrogen (and nitrogen).

    Secondly the question is what you'd want to harvest off planets. Earth would have to make a very considerable investment to send off very small populations with no prospect to getting something in return. There's no real benefit, never mind the technical obstacles we'd have to face in that regard.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cookiegod View Post
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  4. #24
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    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    It's as much of a technological challenge as creating cookies without having any cookie ingredients, or anything needed to create cookie ingredients, or anything needed to create anything needed to create cookie ingredients, or anything needed to create anything needed to create anything needed to create cookie ingredients.
    Well, we have 3D printers today. So you can do exactly that. You haven't specified that the cookies need to be edible, have you?

    Given how rapidly our technology evolves, I can actually see humanity transforming stuff with very little resources required. No idea what kind of technology it will be, and not considering the much higher likeliness that we will blow ourselves up before, I'd say it'd be only a matter of time. Perhaps a few thousand years more or less, but what does it matter?

    There's no real benefit
    There is. Just human nature. Humanity will try to it, no matter what. If they succeed, then their primal instincts kick in. They want to live in Utopia. A nice cozy blue-greenish planet, always sunny, with lots of happy children and eternal freedom. Oh my, what is that? A new dictator? Better duck away!

  5. #25

    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Quote Originally Posted by Cookiegod View Post
    Firstly the issue with terraforming isn't simply technical. It's a simple question of having the resources or not. You can't create water out of nothing. The necessary force to create/disassemble atoms into being is astronomical, so you have to find the already existing material. Hydrogen tends to be one of the first ingredients to be blown off into space.

    It's as much of a technological challenge as creating cookies without having any cookie ingredients, or anything needed to create cookie ingredients, or anything needed to create anything needed to create cookie ingredients, or anything needed to create anything needed to create anything needed to create cookie ingredients.

    It's fundamentally the exact same challenge as turning lead into gold, except that now you'd be trying to turn some other element into hydrogen (and nitrogen).
    If the other issues could be solved, getting water there isn't as big of a problem. It could come from crashing an ice-moon or comets into the planet. That is a matter of altering orbits and being able to accurately predict the outcome.

    If we get to the point that we're exploring planets in other solar systems with unmanned vehicles, we may get lucky enough to find a less daunting project to shoot for.

    Anyway, I agree it's all fantasy for the foreseeable future, but if our species survives long enough, technology might get there.
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  6. #26
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    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Quote Originally Posted by sumskilz View Post
    ...

    If we get to the point that we're exploring planets in other solar systems with unmanned vehicles, we may get lucky enough to find a less daunting project to shoot for.

    Anyway, I agree it's all fantasy for the foreseeable future, but if our species survives long enough, technology might get there.

    ...
    Well in my opinion thats the more "realistic" option:

    Spaceships with colonists in Cryospleep flying to other planets.

    Perhaps first step:

    https://www.cell.com/current-biology...showall%3Dtrue

    We must only get over the little step of applying it to organism with complex cell structure.^^
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  7. #27
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    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Why so much hazzle to send a human, when we can simply send a machine?
    Or... why so much hazzle to even be a human, when we can augment ourselves to become machines? 'Eternal' life included.

    Yeah, yeah, derailing the thread here. But then again, when I read 'Venus or Mars', I first thought it'd be just be one more gender equality threads. That stuff could be solved with machines too.

  8. #28

    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Much of Venus' surface temperature is due to the thick atmosphere. Eliminating much of the atmosphere would change the surface temperature drastically. Much of it is CO2. This can be removed using bacteria and there are bacteria that can survive high temperatures and acidic environments. Pyrolobus fumarii that live near volcanic vents under the ocean survive at around 120 Celcius degrees. This could be used for the mid to upper layers of the atmosphere where temperatures are more favorable. Then there is the idea of introducing Hydrogen to Venus' surface that would turn the atmosphere into graphite and water. There is also the idea of bombarding Venus with an asteroid. If it contains Hydrogen, even better. With the right impact angle this would also help with increasing Venus' spin as momentum is conserved.

    Consider this a nice coincidence, or cognitive bias, but Nasa announced 2 new missions to Venus recently. There is also a third mission by the ESA.

    NASA Selects 2 Missions to Study ‘Lost Habitable’ World of Venus
    DAVINCI+ (Deep Atmosphere Venus Investigation of Noble gases, Chemistry, and Imaging)

    DAVINCI+ will measure the composition of Venus’ atmosphere to understand how it formed and evolved, as well as determine whether the planet ever had an ocean. The mission consists of a descent sphere that will plunge through the planet’s thick atmosphere, making precise measurements of noble gases and other elements to understand why Venus’ atmosphere is a runaway hothouse compared the Earth’s.

    In addition, DAVINCI+ will return the first high resolution pictures of the unique geological features on Venus known as “tesserae,” which may be comparable to Earth’s continents, suggesting that Venus has plate tectonics. This would be the first U.S.-led mission to Venus’ atmosphere since 1978, and the results from DAVINCI+ could reshape our understanding of terrestrial planet formation in our solar system and beyond. James Garvin of Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, is the principal investigator. Goddard provides project management.
    VERITAS (Venus Emissivity, Radio Science, InSAR, Topography, and Spectroscopy)

    VERITAS will map Venus’ surface to determine the planet’s geologic history and understand why it developed so differently than Earth. Orbiting Venus with a synthetic aperture radar, VERITAS will chart surface elevations over nearly the entire planet to create 3D reconstructions of topography and confirm whether processes such as plate tectonics and volcanism are still active on Venus.

    VERITAS also will map infrared emissions from Venus’ surface to map its rock type, which is largely unknown, and determine whether active volcanoes are releasing water vapor into the atmosphere. Suzanne Smrekar of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California, is the principal investigator. JPL provides project management. The German Aerospace Center will provide the infrared mapper with the Italian Space Agency and France’s Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales contributing to the radar and other parts of the mission.
    Then There Were 3: NASA to Collaborate on ESA’s New Venus Mission
    On June 10, 2021, the European Space Agency (ESA) announced the selection of EnVision as its newest medium-class science mission. EnVision will make detailed observations of Venus to understand its history and especially understand the connections between the atmosphere and geologic processes. As a key partner in the mission, NASA provides the Synthetic Aperture Radar, called VenSAR, to make high resolution measurements of the planet’s surface features.
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  9. #29
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    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Its likely terraforming (as my tiny brain can grasp it) would be the work of millions of years, with constant supervision and intervention to make sure the right cyanobacteria do the right job etc etc.

    Humans will likely be extinct within a few hundred thousand years, either from self-annihilation (nuclear, climatic, AI-revenge) or evolution (fragile Y, transhumanism, merging with the iMind). So why bother terraforming?

    Much faster to change the people rather than the planet. We could just Veniform/Mariform ourselves ( a la Surface Tension) to exist on new planets. Joviform humans for Jupiter, banned from the Olympics of course.

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  10. #30
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    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Quote Originally Posted by Septentrionalis View Post
    It is amazing how these wild fictions become a plausible reality to some when repeated enough. There will be no terraforming of anything on a planetary scale. The whole idea is ludicrous. We seem to be unable to reverse a little climate change but we could turn an entire planet with a fiery hot and crushing atmosphere and acidic rain into a nice and cozy planet like Earth? Just because someone said it would be cool doesn't make it feasible.
    Most of these questions are not a matter of whether it's possible to terraform a planet. Fermi Paradox aside, if we can figure out how to live sustainably in space, there will come a time in which planets are considered resources that are practical to use - at scale.

    You are limiting your ambition of thought about our future in terms of our current capabilities and requirements, and our current economic structures. But there is potential in future for consideration of the economic and scientific capabilities and requirements of populations of trillions or hundreds of trillions of people - not just the few billion we have now, if the problem of sustainable life in space can be solved. It leads to unlimited population potential. At that scale, with that kind of economic capability, then dismantling planets for their raw materials becomes feasible. Or stripping gas giants of their hydrogen, or using stars as engines. Literal space opera stuff.

    Certainly, nothing like this will happen until we are capable of living in space at scale, and that probably wont happen in the next hundred years, but beyond that it becomes ludicrous to think in terms of limits of expansion or potential - as limiting as a Roman citizen not being able to contemplate aircraft. It's likely by that stage we'll be sending multi-generational probes to the nearest star systems, we'll have permanent settlements on the moon and mars, corporations will be putting dollar signs on every rock in the solar system.

    Certainly, it is my feeling that terraforming will be pointless. Not because it wont be possible at some point in the future, but because the cost-benefit won't ever match up. We'll be able to live happily in space for a lot less cost than it takes to spend a few thousand or million years reshaping a planet. But my cynicism is about economics, not capability. Even with our current technology we are already terraforming a planet - our own.

    So long as we don't hit a Fermi filter, we will continue to grow into space. We've only been in space for 50 years - our species existed 100,000 years ago. Contemplate 100,000 years from now... Potential is not a question of if
    Last edited by antaeus; June 13, 2021 at 07:58 PM.
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  11. #31

    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Quote Originally Posted by PointOfViewGun View Post
    When we talk about terraforming a planet the first option that comes up is Mars. There are some good reasons for that as the initial price for creating a kind of space colony is exponentially much less compared to many other options. However, the long term effect of Mars' gravity and lack of magnetic field poses long term problems. Venus, on the other hand, presents a very different option.

    As the closest planet to Earth, Venus is considered as the sister planet. It's composition is fairly similar to Earth. Compared to Earth's 9.80 m/s2 surface gravity, Venus' is 8.87 m/s2, while Mars enjoys a mere 3.72 m/s2. This is the most important argument in favor of Venus. Gravity of any planet is one thing we will likely never be able to change within the foreseeable future. No matter how well we terraform Mars its gravity will still not be at a comfortable zone to keep our body healthy in the long run.

    Another argument for Venus is that its core composition is thought to be very similar to that of Earth's. That potentially means that the planet can generate a magnetic field of its own to keep life safe on the surface. We just need to find a way to help the planet spin as fast as Earth to imitate Earth days and nights. Currently, one day on Venus takes over 116 days of time from Earth's perspective. Meanwhile, Mars' days are almost identical to that of Earth's at one day plus 37 minutes.

    The most important problem with Venus that we would have to tackle first is its atmosphere. It's so dense yet so violent that its winds can alter the rotation speed slightly that manage to create noticeable differences in day lengths on Venus based on measurements at different times. With a mostly carbon dioxide atmosphere, atmospheric pressure on the surface on Venus is over 92 bars and contains thick clouds made up of sulfuric acid. If you can reach the surface you'll be trying to survive at a temperature of over 450 Celsius degrees.

    Two major tasks are required to make Venus hospitable; calm the atmosphere and increase the spin speed of the planet. While Mars seems to have a low initial cost but a high long term cost of living, Venus seems to have a high initial cost but immense opportunity for the long term.

    Which one would you want to focus on? Mars? Or Venus?
    Mars.

    Mars may be be a near vacuum on the surface, bur we can manage that with even current technology. We cannot manage the crushing pressure and intense heat of Venus.

    Even if we created floating cities on Venus, all the resources needed to maintain those floating cities would have to be imported at great expense, either the fron Earth itself or the from the surface.

    We can maintain probes on Mars for years, while the best we can do is only hours in Venus.

  12. #32

    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Changing a planet's atmosphere is not a relatively slow process. It certainly wouldn't take millions of years or even thousands, especially if the planet is capable of keeping an atmosphere and already has one. Mars, in this regard, is the worst option. The planet can't keep its atmosphere due to low gravity and no magnetic field and it's also fairly cold, at minus 80 Celsius degrees. Mars habitat will likely never be able to go beyond a scientific colony with only short term living arrangements.

    The idea about Venus is not to survive under its current atmosphere but to change it sufficiently for development. With a rich surface and atmosphere we have a lot more to work with. Also, consider Venus as the future version of Earth. If we can alter Venus we will know a lot more on what to do with Earth.
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  13. #33
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    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Quote Originally Posted by antaeus View Post
    Most of these questions are not a matter of whether it's possible to terraform a planet. Fermi Paradox aside, if we can figure out how to live sustainably in space, there will come a time in which planets are considered resources that are practical to use - at scale.

    You are limiting your ambition of thought about our future in terms of our current capabilities and requirements, and our current economic structures. But there is potential in future for consideration of the economic and scientific capabilities and requirements of populations of trillions or hundreds of trillions of people - not just the few billion we have now, if the problem of sustainable life in space can be solved. It leads to unlimited population potential. At that scale, with that kind of economic capability, then dismantling planets for their raw materials becomes feasible. Or stripping gas giants of their hydrogen, or using stars as engines. Literal space opera stuff.

    Certainly, nothing like this will happen until we are capable of living in space at scale, and that probably wont happen in the next hundred years, but beyond that it becomes ludicrous to think in terms of limits of expansion or potential - as limiting as a Roman citizen not being able to contemplate aircraft. It's likely by that stage we'll be sending multi-generational probes to the nearest star systems, we'll have permanent settlements on the moon and mars, corporations will be putting dollar signs on every rock in the solar system.

    Certainly, it is my feeling that terraforming will be pointless. Not because it wont be possible at some point in the future, but because the cost-benefit won't ever match up. We'll be able to live happily in space for a lot less cost than it takes to spend a few thousand or million years reshaping a planet. But my cynicism is about economics, not capability. Even with our current technology we are already terraforming a planet - our own.

    So long as we don't hit a Fermi filter, we will continue to grow into space. We've only been in space for 50 years - our species existed 100,000 years ago. Contemplate 100,000 years from now... Potential is not a question of if
    Sorry Antaeus, you lost a lot of credibility when you in all seriousness equated generating centrifugal force to being the same as generating actual gravity:
    Quote Originally Posted by antaeus View Post
    We do artificial gravity on earth all the time. Doing artificial gravity on a scale large enough to live in isn't a question of whether it's possible, but rather whether we want to spend the money on developing the required engineering. It's certainly doable - particularly in places where low gravity leads to lower stresses on machinery - and the physics of a number of different options are well understood.
    Let's start the first reason why this is so ridiculous. A gravitron amusement ride works through centrifugal force. fugal has the same root as fugitive - it flees the center. If you want to create gravity through centrifugality on Mars, which is literally what you're saying here, all the stuff would be flying off to space. The claim that low gravity leads to lower stresses on machinery when said machinery's job would be to create gravity is also bonkers. If for example we were to create the simplest (and to my knowledge only practicable) artificial gravity in space, which is two rockets connected by steel ropes spinning around a common sensor, then the steel ropes connecting the two rockets would experience the stresses equal to the masses of the rockets multiplied by the centrifugal accelation divided by the crosssectional areas of the ropes.

    In short: What you're saying here can be can be compared to claiming that the Sumerians had rocket technology since rockets are a mode of transport, and the Sumerians had carts drawn by oxen, which are also a mode of transport.

    Yet we have no proposition, NONE, at least to my knowledge, that can create artificial gravity on a planet.
    It's not simply a question of larger scale, it'd have to be the completely opposite of the gravitron you're proposing.

    Nota bene that you didn't even have to propose the gravitron when you set the bar for gravity so low. Every time you accelerate your car, you're subjecting your body to acceleration as well. An acceleration you can express in g-equivalents. If you accelerate with roughly 10m/s² in a Porsche on a freeway, you've created artificial gravity by your own standards.
    Everytime you make a turn in your car, you're experiencing a force directed outwards, which can be expressed as g-equivalents and works the exact same way the Gravitron works.

    So to get back to the latest post of yours:
    Quote Originally Posted by antaeus View Post
    You are limiting your ambition of thought about our future in terms of our current capabilities and requirements, and our current economic structures.
    Nope. If this thread is supposed to have any meaning at all, rather than being pure fantasy, then it has to be grounded in our current reality, where our laws of physics still apply. Granted, no one can foresee if the world comes up with some form of magic, but unless we find some unlimited source of energy and decide to use it in hilariously impractical ways, then it's not on the table. And if we did, then the discussion for us here would be as moot, since, as you so eloquently put it, we'd be like Romans imagining aircraft. Except that the ancient world were able to see birds and knew how projectiles worked, and certainly did experiments.

    Quote Originally Posted by antaeus View Post
    But there is potential in future for consideration of the economic and scientific capabilities and requirements of populations of trillions or hundreds of trillions of people - not just the few billion we have now, if the problem of sustainable life in space can be solved. It leads to unlimited population potential.
    Well hopefully you can agree that at the very least we'd be limited by the amount of material available for crafting and maintaining said space crafts.
    Which is where this becomes also quite hilariously unrealistic. Given how you're talking TRILLIONS here, I don't think you're aware how ridiculously large a space station would have to be to even sustain 150 colonists, which btw. would be the minimum requirement to avoid a genetic bottleneck.

    Never mind how weird it is to dream about it given how horrible the living conditions would be on those space stations.
    Though, to offer you a peace laurel, I will readily admit those living conditions would certainly be no worse than on Mars.
    Quote Originally Posted by PointOfViewGun View Post
    Also, consider Venus as the future version of Earth. If we can alter Venus we will know a lot more on what to do with Earth.
    Let me get this straight: You think we can find a way to deal with climate change on earth by attempting a far, far, far more daunting task on Venus?
    Last edited by Cookiegod; June 14, 2021 at 04:45 AM.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cookiegod View Post
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  14. #34

    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Quote Originally Posted by Cookiegod View Post
    Let me get this straight: You think we can find a way to deal with climate change on earth by attempting a far, far, far more daunting task on Venus?
    European Space Agency - How Venus and Mars can teach us about Earth
    One has a thick poisonous atmosphere, one has hardly any atmosphere at all, and one is just right for life to flourish – but it wasn’t always that way. The atmospheres of our two neighbours Venus and Mars can teach us a lot about the past and future scenarios for our own planet.
    Venus present a safe petri dish for us to experiment on altering a planet's atmosphere. If a bacteria can work on Venus to get rid of carbon in the air at a planetary scale that's a big know how that we might need on Earth in the future.
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  15. #35
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    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

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  16. #36

    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Quote Originally Posted by PointOfViewGun View Post
    Changing a planet's atmosphere is not a relatively slow process. It certainly wouldn't take millions of years or even thousands, especially if the planet is capable of keeping an atmosphere and already has one. Mars, in this regard, is the worst option. The planet can't keep its atmosphere due to low gravity and no magnetic field and it's also fairly cold, at minus 80 Celsius degrees. Mars habitat will likely never be able to go beyond a scientific colony with only short term living arrangements.

    The idea about Venus is not to survive under its current atmosphere but to change it sufficiently for development. With a rich surface and atmosphere we have a lot more to work with. Also, consider Venus as the future version of Earth. If we can alter Venus we will know a lot more on what to do with Earth.
    Reducing Venus atmosphere from its current 92 times Earth is not something that can be done in decades or hundreds of years. It will take thousands of years, it it can be done at all. We cannot not even remove the small.amount of CO2 we dump into Earth's atmosphere and you are talking about an amount almost 10,000 times greater? Dream on. Not going to happen any time soon. If we could remove that much CO2 frome Venus, Climate Change would not be a concern

    People could live in dome cities on Mars. Kilometer wide domed cities could be feasible. Still not a solution to any of Earth's problems, and you might wonder why. Kilometer long giant O'Neil colonies might be preferable, but I suspect they would be more expensive and harder to construct than just domes cities, but maybe not.


    Floating cities on Venus might be possible, but everything you need would be an expensive import. Any mining on the surface of Venus would be expensive snd very difficult, it likely be cheaper to import from space. The floating cities on Venus I doubt would ever be more than a science colony. Mars has a far greater possibility to mine many of the resources needed than Venus .

  17. #37
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    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Kilometer wide domed cities would only be feasible if the planet remained at its reduced gravity, if at all. Trust me, I'm an engineer and all that. Probably not even then, since you need one heck of a lot material to shield yourself from cosmic radiation, and building in such a hostile environment would be far harder to do than on earth.

    Oh yeah, I should have mentioned: Those fancy spaceships with windows and those colonies with glass domes? Ain't gonna happen, unless everyone's ok with having one third of their DNA sliced per year spent in space. :O

    Oh and I forgot/am not so sure how much of an issue that'd still be with the significantly reduced yet still existent gravity, but with regards to zero gravity at least you'd face very significant challenges with regards to reproduction.
    Translation: Even if your thing works, it probably won't work as well as on earth

    It's honestly fun to go through the dozens of reasons why it can't work, each one of which should be enough to kill it for the foreseeable future.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cookiegod View Post
    From Socrates over Jesus to me it has always been the lot of any true visionary to be rejected by the reactionary bourgeoisie
    Qualis noncives pereo! #justiceforcookie #egalitéfraternitécookié #CLM

  18. #38

    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Going blind in no or low gravity environment would likely take precedence over making babies. Long term living on Mars is just not feasible with our current medical understanding.

    I honestly don't think changing the composition of a planet's atmosphere would take thousands of years or even hundreds. Bacteria can multiply and create results fast. A few right kind of asteroids would help similarly fast.
    The Armenian Issue
    http://www.twcenter.net/forums/group.php?groupid=1930

    "We're nice mainly because we're rich and comfortable."

  19. #39

    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    Some thoughts here. Sorry for not quoting everyone appropriately, but I read every message in this thread carefully.

    First of all, I find that leaning on some unknown future technology that will make anything possible is disingenious. There are practically no limits to what you can assign to that technology if you do not have to assume any responsibility of possible economic, ecological, or material needs and consequences involved or even present any theoretical ideas on how that would work. If some mythical future technology will remove all barriers and make skeptics embarrassed, why even bother to terraform anything. Hey, we could create a nice planet instead of trying to fix a broken old one.

    That sort of deus ex machina is not very plausible for a species that is finding it ever harder to create more powerful processing units, to come up with any new antibiotics, and is not making much progress with beating cancer or eliminating poverty. There is no evidence that the universe is presenting us with unending possibilities to do entirely new things to game natural laws.

    There may never be any way to overcome gravity by any novel means; present space rockets just use a highly refined and optimized version of chemical propulsion. A technique that powered the earliest cannons. Light speed is not fast enough for meaningful interstellar travel to suitable worlds to terraform, and even that may never be attainable to us. For all we know, faster-than-light travel could be utterly impossible, even if our storytellers have made us comfy with the idea of warp drive.

    Romans could not create or perhaps even envision a flying machine, that is true. But all the materials they would have needed were at their fingertips if they had only figured out how to produce and combine the needed components. Producing an airplane is not materially much different from building any other advanced vehicle once you know what to do. However, sending enough materials from the Earth to another planet to significantly change its nature is a huge undertaking even if we knew what to do and produce. It could eat up so much of our resources that we would ruin this planet in the attempt without any guarantee of success at the other end.

    That brings me to the issue of economics and political will. In a world that is constantly generating problems such as poverty and political conflict, how could we ever reach a consensus that terraforming Venus is what all our resources should go at? That we should, rather than feed the poor, send rockets after rockets carrying our precious materials to a hostile dead world that none of the people alive today would see any significant change in? Immediate human interests and opinions on resource allocation are a very real thing outside science fiction. If you imagine that all humanity would transform into beings that all work in unison like ants for some goal beyond their lives and the lives of many generations to come, you are living in a fantasy.

    Furthermore, perhaps the most imporant consideration is something that others here have already raised. Any problem of climate change or overpopulation are almost infinitely easier to fix right here on Earth with the scarce resources that the terraforming project would be in direct competition with. If we cannot live here because of a greenhouse effect in risk of turning the runaway kind, but we can pump harmful gases out of an atmosphere of a planet, we can surely do it more easily and more efficiently here. In fact, if we had a pressing need to exit this planet, we would most likely all die before we can settle comfortably on Venus. We are a fragile species in a fragile world with limited resources and no promise of a world significantly different from the one we experience now.

    Finally, I would like to bring up the fact that the materially challenging advances that people a few generations ago imagined the future would bring have not become true. We did not get hovering cars, jetpacks, teleportation, ray guns, habitable spaceships taking us far into space, and the like. What we got were ever smaller electronical devices that could show us all the cat videos in the world. Or allow us to check bus schedules on the go and order food with. I do not see any reason why the material revolution would happen in the next two generations either. The limitations of energy and matter that we experience may turn out to be ungameable, and we will have to make do with better information systems, networks, and biotech to solve our problems.
    == El Burrito Senoro ==

  20. #40

    Default Re: Venus vs. Mars

    I think this categorical rejection of newer technologies ignores the advances we have already achieved. Precisely, bacteria or organisms in general, that can alter an atmosphere is not some science fiction. We already have organisms on Earth that are capable of changing molecular composition of their environment. We can already alter or adjust mechanisms of organisms. Getting them to Venus is not something that would be economically devastating. There are no ecological cost as we'd be testing them on a different planet meanwhile introducing the wrong organisms on Earth could be devastating. This is a mission Elon Musk or Bill Gates could fund by themselves. The Mars Perseverance mission cost less than 3 billion dollars. We're not talking about some kind of materialization technology. Much of what at least I pointed at are feasible technologies.
    The Armenian Issue
    http://www.twcenter.net/forums/group.php?groupid=1930

    "We're nice mainly because we're rich and comfortable."

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