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Mars (One) Needs Payloads

timothy posted about three weeks ago | from the ok-but-nothing-too-heavy dept.

Mars 77

mbone (558574) writes Mars One has announced that their first, unmanned, lander, targeted for 2018, needs payloads. Along with their 4 experiments, and a University experiment, they have two payloads for hire: "Mars One offers two payload opportunities for paying mission contributors. Proposals can take the form of scientific experiments, technology demonstrations, marketing and publicity campaigns, or any other suggested payload. 'Previously, the only payloads that have landed on Mars are those which NASA has selected,' said Bas Lansdorp, 'We want to open up the opportunity to the entire world to participate in our mission to Mars by sending a certain payload to the surface of Mars.'" The formal Request for Proposals for all of this is out now as well.

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Lego Mindstorms Projects (1)

MillionthMonkey (240664) | about three weeks ago | (#47436457)

If there's one thing Mars doesn't have enough of, it's Legos.

Re:Lego Mindstorms Projects (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about three weeks ago | (#47436495)

If there's one thing Mars doesn't have enough of, it's Legos.

I thought it was Moms it was out of? Better idea, though: let's find some of the A/C's here and see if they fit.

Re:Lego Mindstorms Projects (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440895)

let's find some of the A/C's [Lego] here and see if they fit.

You will have to take my Lego from my cold, dead, hands.

just... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436459)

Lichens, moss, fertilizer and a dispersal mechanism.

Re:just... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436473)

Your post is fertilizer.

Re:just... (1)

yanyan (302849) | about three weeks ago | (#47436839)

Yes, this one! Throw in other, more complex plants and spread them around. Awesome idea.

Re:just... (1)

ecotax (303198) | about three weeks ago | (#47437247)

Plus some microbes of course, maybe throw in some tardigrades. It just might be enough to start life 2.0, which would be a nice backup and a great achievement.

Now that we're reasonably sure Mars is barren, I really don't get NASA's "let's not pollute it" attitude anymore.

Re:just... (2)

RockDoctor (15477) | about three weeks ago | (#47444789)

Now that we're reasonably sure Mars is barren

Who is this "we" who are reasonably sure that Mars is barren? It sure doesn't include me. OK, I'm not a specialist biologist emphasising study of the 5 points which we've measured on Mars (and found lacking in life forms which we recognise, I'll grant), but I am a geologist with a better than normal understanding of the variability of rocks and the habitats that they represent to life forms. People I was at university with have worked on (and published) on some very peculiar terrestrial organisms from deep oil wells, and that represents just a few percent of the potentially habitable volume of this planet. And remember : so far we're only looking for life forms that have metabolisms and physiologies which function broadly similarly to ours.

If we had (say) 10 independent OOL (Origin Of Life) events (say, in different stellar systems), and in our couple of decades of experimentation Mars didn't have a trace of any of those systems, then I might agree that a few decades of searching would be sufficient. But since we still really have NO IDEA what the actual range of effective solutions to the questions of metabolism and physiology are, for this initial case I'd vote strongly in favour of waiting for a generation or ten. Say, until we've got a plan to decontaminate the planet which is as achievable (in the next ten human generations) as terraforming the planet.

(Though I'm a fan of SF, when I'm talking about terraforming Mars, I'm talking about a real plan, not a hand-wavey SF-quality plan. For example, it would be nice to know where you plan to get the 4*10^18kg (approx) of water that you'd need to put a 100m of water onto 30% of the surface (assuming you want some sort of vaguely terrestrial climate, and you're going to use a significant amount of water for things like agriculture). More to the point, how are you going to get to that level of space-faring expertise without concluding that living in asteroid belts is just plain easier than terraforming even quite terrestrial planets like Mars? Build the environment that you want, rather than having to tear down an existing environment and then build the environment that you want.)

Re:just... (1)

Z00L00K (682162) | about three weeks ago | (#47439077)

Poppy seeds, if nothing else grows then they can at least have some fun.

A DNA Payload (-1, Troll)

drpimp (900837) | about three weeks ago | (#47436483)

Of my semen!

Re:A DNA Payload (5, Funny)

Tablizer (95088) | about three weeks ago | (#47436699)

of my semen!

it's already on Uranus

Re:A DNA Payload (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436729)

Actually, the payload of jizz has been proposed by Vonnegut in "The Big Space Fuck" http://www.pierretristam.com/Bobst/07/wf041307.htm

Mars Needs Women (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436489)

Mars Needs Women [imdb.com] . Known since 1967.

Payloads to send to Mars? (3, Funny)

cold fjord (826450) | about three weeks ago | (#47436497)

'We want to open up the opportunity to the entire world to participate in our mission to Mars by sending a certain payload to the surface of Mars.'"

Justin Bieber? Miley Cyrus?

Re:Payloads to send to Mars? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436599)

I'd donate to a kickstarter campaign to send Justin Bieber to Mars.

Re:Payloads to send to Mars? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47437545)

I'd donate to a kickstarter campaign to send Justin Bieber to Mars.

K'breel ponders this thought for a moment, and demands your gelsacs in tribute.

Re:Payloads to send to Mars? (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about three weeks ago | (#47436695)

but we don't want to start an interplanetary war

Re:Payloads to send to Mars? (3, Funny)

cold fjord (826450) | about three weeks ago | (#47436707)

If it did start a war it would almost certainly be short. I'm inclined to believe that Martians would immediately surrender under a bombardment like that.

Re:Payloads to send to Mars? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436943)

It would be a violation of some Intergalatic standards of war and we would be shunned Oh wait we are, Fermi you were wrong! They just have good taste.

Vote Them Off The Planet (2)

TheLink (130905) | about three weeks ago | (#47436857)

1) Make a reality TV show: Vote Them Off The Planet
2) Vote people off the planet with one way and return categories. whether for real or not doesn't matter, but if for real you can have the option for people to only do the one way when they want to pay for the return leg.
3) Profit!

Re:Vote Them Off The Planet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436953)

I vote for a large block of certain sections of American culture that give the rest of you a bad name.

Take my wife... (1, Funny)

nytes (231372) | about three weeks ago | (#47436499)

please

Skeptical (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436515)

Seeing is believing.

Robots (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436525)

Robots and drones adapted for mars, with a wide variety of powerful electronic instruments.
I don't know, random stuff from youtube could also help to find ideas.

Microphones (3, Interesting)

Electricity Likes Me (1098643) | about three weeks ago | (#47436529)

I would really like to land a couple of microphones on Mars.

Some high bandwidth (beyond human hearing) stuff, and some human hearing range stuff. I'd love to know what Mars sounds like.

Re:Microphones (1)

winphreak (915766) | about three weeks ago | (#47436561)

Streaming live ambiance from the surface of Mars would be interesting. It's still eerie to me to see photos of the surface, simply because of the colors and shades present in the sand. It's (bad joke) out of this world.

Re:Microphones (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436583)

ROTFLMFAO awesome joke, dude!!!

Re:Microphones (4, Informative)

Ford Prefect (8777) | about three weeks ago | (#47436615)

A microphone has already been landed on Mars [wikipedia.org] - unfortunately there was a risk of data corruption if the camera hardware it was attached to was turned on, so the microphone itself never got switched on...

Re:Microphones (1)

antdude (79039) | about three weeks ago | (#47439167)

So, turn off the camera to use the mic(rophone)? :P

One word. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436537)

Starbucks.

Perfect crew... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436575)

Can we stick an "AIR FORCE 1" sticker on the side?

Mars (One) Needs Payloads? (1)

grep -v '.*' * (780312) | about three weeks ago | (#47436607)

Me.

Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436611)

Why we are still reading about this hoax? cmon!

I want to send a carved rock (4, Funny)

the_Bionic_lemming (446569) | about three weeks ago | (#47436623)

If I had the money to buy the mission, I'd send a carved rock to be deployed that would indicate that either John Carter or I owned Mars, and that we would have to sword fight for ownership.

My guess is that John Carter never made it to Mars, but if he did and and If I had to I could arrange a meeting place and nuke the entire site from orbit. Itâ(TM)s the only way to be sure. Cause I suck at sword fighting.

Justin bieber... (0)

BrianSoCal (1519721) | about three weeks ago | (#47436641)

... I vote for that!

Women (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436651)

Mars needs women.

Are these people qualified for anything? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436657)

Scanning through the Mars One "About Us" page, I see a bunch of people with MAs and blather about their "boldness" and "entrepreneurial spirit". They even list their concept artist and marketing team. Where are the PhDs in aerospace engineering and physics?

Re:Are these people qualified for anything? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47437517)

They do not need PhDs, because they are not doing science. They need a couple of vainglorious billionaires to pay them lots of money to send a meaningless payload into space. It doesn't even have to make it Mars, it only has to fly out of view of the launch platform's observation deck. None of these morons will have any idea what happens after that anyway.

Re:Are these people qualified for anything? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47437653)

They are paying Lockheed for most of the science-y stuff.

Re:Are these people qualified for anything? (2)

itzly (3699663) | about three weeks ago | (#47437739)

oblig Dilbert reference: http://search.dilbert.com/comi... [dilbert.com]

Rover? (1)

globaljustin (574257) | about three weeks ago | (#47436669)

if MarsOne was in any way legit, nations and orgs would be lining up to get these payloads...Russia, China, ESA, NASA, MIT, UCLA, India, not to mention private companies including mining companies

i'd put a rover up to test preselected areas...

-OR-

have a rover -AND- a craft that detaches in orbit or before that goes an explores a pre-select asteroid

i saw someone suggest "Lego Mindstorms" above...that's where this is at...really...it'll be like a Raspberry Pi thing they select

Animals (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about three weeks ago | (#47436685)

Let's send up chimps like we used to. [opinionbug.com]

Re:Animals (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436763)

I would have suggested sending your mom, but I realized shifting so much mass around would upset the solar system's gravity equilibrium and send random things crashing into Uranus. Well, more than usual.

Re:Animals (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47437099)

We have plenty of negroes no one will miss. We could found New Detroit on Mars.

Payloads? Here's what I would like to see. (4, Interesting)

wierd_w (1375923) | about three weeks ago | (#47436733)

The kinds of payloads I would like to see delivered to mars are exactly the kind that the international planetary society would come out of their skins over.

Waterbears, antarctic algea, and things of that nature.

Those are lifeforms that could concievably survive indefinatly on mars. (waterbears can live, totally exposed, in the vacuum of space.-- Antarctic algeal forms are able to live in extremely saline conditions just within the first few millimeters of moist rocks, in blisteringly cold temperatures, and engage in active photosynthesis. Together, it is concievable for a highly simplistic, but stable biosphere to be cultivated/initiated on mars.)

http://antarcticfacts.weebly.c... [weebly.com]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/T... [wikipedia.org]

In terms of scientific aparatus-- I would be interested in seeing how stationary wind turbines fare on the red planet. There is no surface vegitation of any kind to restrict or stop basically constant howling winds there, however the low atmospheric pressure may mean that while the wind is blowing with gusto, it packs little "punch". As far as I know, there is little data on the total energy yeild of wind energy on mars-- For a colony, wind energy would present a very attractive option over solar, which would be significantly less total energy per cubic meter than what is attainable on earth, especially when one considers the inefficiency of solar to begin with. Data on how much energy is reasonably able to be extracted, so that ideally sized generation systems can be designed, and data on rates of wind blown particle erosion on those devices would be of considerable value.

Re:Payloads? Here's what I would like to see. (1)

photonic (584757) | about three weeks ago | (#47437211)

As you said, the low density of air at Mars might be a problem. The theoretical [windgenkits.com] maximum power that can be harvested with a wind turbine is P = 1/2 * rho * A * V^3. Some numbers from Nasa [nasa.gov] show that the density rho is about 1% of the value on Earth, and an average speed of 10 m/s (around 5 Beaufort) is also not exceptional. Finally, you will need a relatively big mechanical device, which is hard to build light and reliable, since it has to survive a rocket launch.

Re:Payloads? Here's what I would like to see. (1)

arglebargle_xiv (2212710) | about three weeks ago | (#47437441)

Could is suggest Asa Dotzler as a payload? I'm sure most Firefox users would happily chip in to send him there.

Re:Payloads? Here's what I would like to see. (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about three weeks ago | (#47438235)

Neither of your payloads need to go Mars. For the first, all the requisite conditions save gravity can be simulated here on Earth. (And if you must simulate gravity, it will be far cheaper to send a centrifuge to LEO.) For the second, all the requisite data is available and merely awaits someone with a computer and some spare time to write the simulation.

And that's real science is done - small scale tests and simulations first to determine if it's even worth it to try larger scale experiments. What you propose is how a fifth grader, or the Mars One staff, thinks science is done.

Re:Payloads? Here's what I would like to see. (1)

wierd_w (1375923) | about three weeks ago | (#47438433)

Who said anything about the first being an experiment?

The experiments you proposed (in a test lab, and in LEO) have already been conducted, which is why I suggested THOSE PARTICULAR ORGANISMS. At this point, the only remaining experiment to see if those organisms could indeed survive in that environment is to send them to that environment and see. However, I did not really intend it as an experiment, I intended it as a precolony groundwork initiative. As I said, a simplistic biosphere could be created, which would radically assist a fledgling colony site.

AND, as I stated initially, it is also the kind of thing that would make the international planetary society come out of their skins, because it would contaminate the purity of mars irrevocably. (then again, MarsONE in general would do that also.)

As for the latter, There's a reason we are still sending spectrometers and chemistry labs to mars. We can simulate the albedo and density of martian regolith, and to a limited extent, we can also simulate the mean bulk chemical constituents, but that does not mean that the regolith simulants produced in a lab will have the same engineering properties of real martial regolith. Such things as the shape of the particles, the reactivity of saline particles in the regolith, and interactions with seasonal dry ice formations on wind diverting surfaces all pose significant engineering challenges to long-term constructions on Mars, which you have so blithely hand-swept away as being answerable with simple models. Here's a hint, we have known about waves and wave mechanics for years, but we still build and use wave tanks, and still do tests in oceans for experimental ocean craft. Theoretical models only can give you what is permissible by the model's constraints. REAL science is conducted against REALITY, not models.

Are you really that fucking stupid? (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about three weeks ago | (#47438767)

The experiments you proposed (in a test lab, and in LEO) have already been conducted

Not in partial G in LEO they haven't.
 

As for the latter, There's a reason we are still sending spectrometers and chemistry labs to mars. We can simulate the albedo and density of martian regolith, and to a limited extent, we can also simulate the mean bulk chemical constituents, but that does not mean that the regolith simulants produced in a lab will have the same engineering properties of real martial regolith.

Did you even remember what you wrote? The second "experiment" had to do with wind, not regolith.
 

Here's a hint, we have known about waves and wave mechanics for years, but we still build and use wave tanks, and still do tests in oceans for experimental ocean craft.

We use wave tanks to test things about waves that are very inconvenient or impossible to test at full scale. (Neither of these things have anything to do with your proposed experiments.) And yes, we still do tests in ocean for experimental craft, but they almost never have to do with the bits that can be tested in a wave tank because there's a bunch of bits that can't be tested in a wave tank. (And again, this has nothing to do with either of your proposed "experiments".)

Here's a hint for you: You're a clueless moron who think that using big words means you're intelligent. You're wrong on that count - all it does is prove you're a parrot that can repeat things it has no capability of understanding.

Re:Are you really that fucking stupid? (1)

wierd_w (1375923) | about three weeks ago | (#47441265)

Not in partial G in LEO they haven't.

Yes, actually they HAVE.

Tardigrades in space:
http://www.newscientist.com/ar... [newscientist.com]

Algae in space:
http://phys.org/news/2014-05-a... [phys.org]

Did you even remember what you wrote? The second "experiment" had to do with wind, not regolith.

Yes. I Do. Quoted below, with emphasis, because you apparently cannot read.

Data on how much energy is reasonably able to be extracted, so that ideally sized generation systems can be designed, and data on rates of wind blown particle erosion on those devices would be of considerable value.

Also, dune migration and wind blown particle accumulation is one of those things, like waves in a large ocean, that is very difficult to model. This is why data from the actual target environment is actually needed, and why I suggested it. The total theoretical energy is indeed calculable by formula using known data, which I nodded to when I asserted that the low atmospheric pressure posed a significant obstacle, but data collected from the other parts I mentioned, specifically in relation to the particle erosion behaviors for fixed mast objects designed to redicrect airflow, would still be of very significant value.

Now kindly stop being an asshole.

Re:Payloads? Here's what I would like to see. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47439883)

holy shit, waterbears in a low gravity, low pressure environment with no predators would mutate to become the size of german shephards! Can you imagine seeing one that big coming after you? they are weird looking things.

Tommy Ramone (1)

statemachine (840641) | about three weeks ago | (#47436755)

Perfect opportunity. He would've loved the idea.

BS! (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436757)

Why do news sites keep posting these scammers press releases?! This project is such stupid, pandering bullshit.

What lander ? (2)

itzly (3699663) | about three weeks ago | (#47436775)

The Mars One web site is awfully sketchy about the details. If I had a multi million dollar payload, I'd like to see some more details of the design, especially if they're promising to take heavy payloads to the surface.

Attention something something clowns (4, Insightful)

tgv (254536) | about three weeks ago | (#47436849)

When are people going to stop paying attention to these clowns? How are they going to launch in 4 years without having working prototypes right now, nor a lot of money? Or are they going to sell 100M mugs in the coming months?

Re:What lander ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47438963)

But you don't, so they're not talking details with you. I'd hope a smart multi-millionaire would ask for the proof in the pudding, and hire a consultant to validate.

Should totally happen. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436789)

http://i554.photobucket.com/albums/jj426/skepticenc/mars.jpg

ideas (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436863)

1) politicians, stack like cordwood until full
if any room remains
2) Faith Hill and Tim McGraw

Musk vs. Mars1 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436919)

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2013/jul/17/elon-musk-mission-mars-spacex

http://news.discovery.com/space/private-spaceflight/the-biggest-flaw-in-mars-ones-business-model-130425.htm

My money is on Musk...but I'm also bummed that all the /. commenters seem to be a bunch of old fogeys who have forgotten how to dream.

Huh what? (1)

Spy Handler (822350) | about three weeks ago | (#47436945)

A Mars landing will cost hundreds of millions, even if these experiment payloads are small. How exactly are they gonna come up with that kind of money? Skimming through TFA didn't reveal any details.

Is this like, put out a bunch of press releases to get publicity, then hope Paul Allen or some other billionaire will fund it? Because the kind of budget they will need is a wee bit out of Kickstarter territory.

Re: Huh what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47436985)

A Mars Colony will cost billions to trillions, but the benefits outweigh those costs by an unimaginable margin. We are talking about opening up an entire new world. We should be doing the same with the moon as well. Not to mention the fact that space elevators are way more feasible in both of those environments. Fuck staying on one planet, lets spread throughout the cosmos and run this shit.

Re: Huh what? (0)

turbidostato (878842) | about three weeks ago | (#47437183)

"A Mars Colony will cost billions to trillions, but the benefits outweigh those costs by an unimaginable margin."

It must be I have poor imagination, because I can't see the benefits to _me_. That means I won't invest the "billions to trillions" it takes.

But, of course, that's me. You surely see the benefits to _you_ so just stop talking and produce the "billions to trillions" and go ahead.

What? No "billions to trillions"? Maybe the benefits of the investment are not so clear after all.

Re: Huh what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47437655)

The parent poster is a man-child stuck in his sci-fi quasi-religious fantasies. A typical Space Nutter.

Re: Huh what? (1)

itzly (3699663) | about three weeks ago | (#47437277)

We are talking about opening up an entire new world

It would be orders of magnitude easier to survive in the Gobi desert, and still I don't see a great rush to move in.

Do they have room for any more bullshit? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47437015)

nt

Payback time (1)

Lost Penguin (636359) | about three weeks ago | (#47437067)

Illudium Q-36 Explosive Space Modulator

a banner (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47437265)

Send a banner with "Yankees go home!"

My Payload... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47437351)

I want to send a picture of Earth...with the words..."Suckers!".

B-Arc (1)

rossdee (243626) | about three weeks ago | (#47437621)

Lets start with Congress, they don't seem to be doing anything useful on this planet..

"Marketing and publicity campaigns"? (1)

Suffering Bastard (194752) | about three weeks ago | (#47437785)

Great, now we're going to start spreading our rampant advertising infection to other planets. Is there anywhere advertising can't go?

Life on Mars (4, Insightful)

penguinoid (724646) | about three weeks ago | (#47437801)

I'm somewhat pleasantly surprised at the number of posts suggesting that we send living things to Mars, but also concerned that no one is suggesting some caution. Those who know a little about the history of bacterial discovery should know that it is fiendishly difficult to test for the presence of life, even here on Earth with organisms we are rather familiar with. Some bacteria we only know about because they showed up on DNA fishing expeditions, even though they've been under our feet the whole time. There could be bacteria under our feet we don't know about, if it either wasn't DNA/RNA based, or if it had sufficiently aggressive DNA/RNA hydrolysis enzymes, or had a sufficiently small geographic distribution.

As I understand it, we're still at the point that if Mars can sustain life we can't ascertain whether it has any. (And if it can't sustain life, there's no point in sending some to die.) Even if there's no life on Mars, there's still the fact that we don't know much about what an abiotic planet looks like. Studying a properly dead planet will help us in our future search for life.

Furthermore, I'm not certain we want to send photosynthetic organisms there for terraforming purposes, given that we need to increase greenhouse gasses like CO2 there to warm the place. (Also, we don't think the surface is survivable, and the sub-surface has less light -- so if we want surviving life, we should send chemotrophs).

marketing and publicity campaigns (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47437905)

You mean the want to let the Martians know we come in peace and not to destroy them?

"first, unmanned, lander, targeted for 2018," (1)

exploder (196936) | about three weeks ago | (#47438313)

I think you can fit at least two more commas in there.

No point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47438317)

The JPL team already drew a giant dong up there. If you're going to pay for a payload, putting a giant wang on another planet has to be at the top of the list.

Mars Needs Guitars! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47448181)

Mars Needs Guitars! [wikipedia.org]

Let me guess (0)

Anonymous Coward | about two weeks ago | (#47504997)

The two Payloads are going to end up being a FOX News banner and a neon Coca Cola Sign

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