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Micro-Space: MARS: Only the Names are Unknown

Published by Sigurd De Keyser on Thu Mar 22, 2007 11:18 pm
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Richard P. Speck, Micro-Space; Micro-Space has identified and mastered all the technologies required for a human expedition to Mars. The “Micro-Space/Entrespace Interplanetary Co-op” effort plus discussions with qualified adventurers and operational engineering prototypes have verified this preparation. The production of customized hardware for near Earth space, cis-lunar and interplanetary expeditions can begin. The minimum requirements for travel to Mars are actually well known (including the fact that it is far easier to reach Mars than the surface of our Moon) and are achievable with proven technology. Organizations insisting on new technology do not like today’s answer: a long, difficult and risky adventure. An adventure resembling a 19th Century polar expedition rather than a 21st Century cruise.

But the Road is Open. Adventurous souls will walk on Mars long before more “civilized” efforts are even funded. They will reach that goal, and bring back samples in less than ten years.

Few are prepared to believe these assertions. But no “groundswell” of support or political activism is required. Pioneers are those who “Seize the Dream”™ and step out in faith while believing is still a challenge: they will be recorded as the first.

Micro-Space has focused on Ultralight Space Technologies – sufficient for a small and well trained crew. This approach does not hide dangers behind a massive, but nearly useless, facade but addresses them with lightweight, redundant safety systems. Personal life support equipment taps SCUBA and mountaineering concepts and adds highly efficient recycling. Planetary ascension systems are styled like an ultralight aircraft. Travel will be in pressurized “Covered Wagons”, using airtight fabric in place of metal walls. A solo Mars mission begins with a few tons of food, fuel and gear and will have costs dominated by delivery of that – plus the adventurer – to Low Earth Orbit.

Adventurers like Marco Polo, Jim Bridger and John Wesley Powell saw that the road to their dreams was open, and they understood the tools and skills necessary for success. Major John Powell, a one armed veteran of the Civil War, considered carefully what he might face in the deep and inaccessible canyons of the Colorado River. Prepared to overcome most of those challenges, his team accepted calculated risks when necessary and succeeded. For those who insist on certain safety lies the certainty of following in other’s footsteps. Major Powell’s shoestring adventure did not need an act of congress: neither will the small expeditions that will soon put the first humans on Mars.

Federal Express could revive its reputation as a “Package Delivery Pioneer”, for example, by hand delivering a customer’s package to the Martian surface (with interplanetary, on-line tracking). It could accomplish this with the annual funding of its NASCAR team.

It is the teams which combine charisma with courage and competence who will both attract funding and succeed. Theirs will be the names listed in tomorrow’s history books.

Feel free to discuss this article in the Micro-Space forum…

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