Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Will the first colony on Mars be started by microbes from Earth?
Daily Digest News ^ | Saturday, May 03, 2014 | Justin Beach,

Posted on 05/03/2014 8:55:23 PM PDT by BenLurkin

Currently, spacecraft bound for Mars or other bodies in our solar system must meet the requirements for a maximal allowable amount of microbial life.

These bioburden levels were established based on studies of how well various organisms respond to the rigors of space travel. These conditions are incredibly harsh and might include extreme cold or heat, high levels of radiation and the airless vacuum of space.

...

However, recent research has shown some organisms to be much hardier than expected. Spores of Bacillus pumilus SAFR-032, for example, have shown high resistance to the techniques used to clean a spacecraft, such as UV radiation and peroxide treatment. They have also survived in a simulated Mars environment for 30 minutes, when most spores in that environment died after 30 seconds. In one experiment, the spores were exposed for 18 months on the European Technology Exposure Facility (EuTEF), a test facility mounted outside the ISS.

“After testing exposure to the simulated Mars environment, we wanted to see what would happen in real space, and EuTEF gave us the chance. To our surprise, some of the spores survived for 18 months,” says Venkateswaran.

(Excerpt) Read more at dailydigestnews.com ...


TOPICS: Travel
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 05/03/2014 8:55:23 PM PDT by BenLurkin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin
Space travel is difficult enough as it is without having to worry about this.

Ensuring no earth microbes make it to Mars will only guarantee no human exploration of that planet

2 posted on 05/03/2014 9:01:31 PM PDT by ClaytonP
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

I happen to think this is a good idea.

There are several microbes in DC that would be perfect specimens. >:)


3 posted on 05/03/2014 9:03:36 PM PDT by logitech (It is time.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: logitech

Those are macrobes lol


4 posted on 05/03/2014 9:06:00 PM PDT by When do we get liberated? (A socialist is a communist who realizes he must suck at the tit of Capitalism.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: ClaytonP

Somehow this all reminds me of THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES.


5 posted on 05/03/2014 9:07:55 PM PDT by UCANSEE2 (Lost my tagline on Flight MH370. Sorry for the inconvenience.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: ClaytonP

I think sending microbes intentionally could be a good way to begin the long task of terraforming.

Seems to me that the whole program of sterilizing the craft is backwards.


6 posted on 05/03/2014 9:08:12 PM PDT by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: When do we get liberated?

Ha!


7 posted on 05/03/2014 9:08:56 PM PDT by logitech (It is time.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

We won’t colonize anything unless we get rid of global PCism.


8 posted on 05/03/2014 9:13:26 PM PDT by Dallas59 ("Remember me as you pass by, As you are now, so once was I, As I am now, so you will be")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

At one time Earth had very little oxygen —cyanobacteria changed that.

They can change that for Mars, also.

We should have done this YEARS ago.

They say the amount of ice under Mar’s south pole would provide enough water, were Mars warmer and totally flat, to submerge all of it’s surface area to a depth of 11 meters.

Before humans get there, they should let cyanobacteria work their magic for a dozen or so years.

I believe now that Mars’ atmospher is just 0.1% oxygen.


9 posted on 05/03/2014 9:17:35 PM PDT by gaijin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Darksheare

What about a civilization of dust bunnies?


10 posted on 05/03/2014 9:24:25 PM PDT by Army Air Corps (Four Fried Chickens and a Coke)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

Why not introduce a wheelbarrow of plant life that is tolerant of extreme hot and cold conditions?


11 posted on 05/03/2014 9:27:46 PM PDT by lurk
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin
Seems to me that the whole program of sterilizing the craft is backwards.

It's not only law, it's international treaty. NASA has a Planetary Protection Office.

It's all about making sure we don't contaminate extra-terrestrial bodies.

The reverse isn't such a high priority.

Only a government could be so stupid.

/johnny

12 posted on 05/03/2014 9:29:54 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

Um, I wish these stupid “ Colonize Mars” fantasies would end. You have to have a human survive the Van Allen radiation belt.... Good luck with that.


13 posted on 05/03/2014 9:48:53 PM PDT by Walkingfeather
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin; All

Speaking of finding microbes on Mars or another planet or asteroid, please consider the following. How will scientists know for sure that such a finding isn’t the result of earth space vehicles that were contaminated with the “bugs,” even in the atmosphere, before they left the earth’s atmosphere?


14 posted on 05/03/2014 9:48:55 PM PDT by Amendment10
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin
No. Plain and simple, life on the “red planet” will not be found as far as we know life to be here on earth. Fungi rule the earth, they will not colonize Mars as there is nothing there to colonize. ‘nough said.
15 posted on 05/03/2014 9:55:15 PM PDT by Fungi
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Walkingfeather

Every lunar mission passed through the Van Allen belts.


16 posted on 05/03/2014 10:01:12 PM PDT by FredZarguna (Das ist nicht nur nicht richtig, es ist nicht einmal falsch!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: Walkingfeather

Gemini and Apollo missions already solved that problem. The real problem is years in zero and low gravity environments. Most of the day you’d have to exercising just to fight off atrophy.


17 posted on 05/03/2014 10:02:31 PM PDT by GunRunner
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: When do we get liberated?; logitech

I thought they were fungi!


18 posted on 05/04/2014 12:02:51 AM PDT by DannyTN
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: FredZarguna

As far as the radiation on the surface of mars is concerned, its comparable to what astronauts experience on the space station. (aside from spikes caused by solar flares) A thicker atmosphere would bring those levels down even more.

Generating a magnetosphere would be the holy grail of making mars truly habitable but I suppose it could be done on a smaller scale to protect human colonies.


19 posted on 05/04/2014 3:37:04 AM PDT by cripplecreek (Remember the River Raisin.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: FredZarguna

They were not exposed to long term radiation that a mission to mars would be. Also have you checked out the trajectory that you would need to have in order to RETURN from mars? You are sitting for 2.5 year on the red planet (of course there would be no way to supply you for that long) before the planets orbit is within reach of the earth again.


20 posted on 05/04/2014 8:54:04 AM PDT by Walkingfeather
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: Walkingfeather
You're out of the Van Allen Belt within about 6 earth radii; tops 50,000 miles. The Van Allen Belt is simply not a serious objection to manned space flight. Long term exposure to radiation from solar flares and cosmic rays is a manageable, known issue. A far bigger problem is the degradation of bone and supporting tissue that occurs in low gravity environments; as much each 2% each month.
21 posted on 05/04/2014 12:13:50 PM PDT by FredZarguna (Das ist nicht nur nicht richtig, es ist nicht einmal falsch!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson