So, how would you like that, you can go to Mars but without insurance? A plan for travel to Mars by humans is now being worked out by scientists ‘though the challenges of a successful landing are still being figured out. A lot of considerations are being studied by scientists and engineers on how to land safely in Mars, assuming that the spacecraft carrying humans has reached the vicinity of Mars.
Important factors being considered for this project include the size and shape of the spacecraft, the kind of fuel to use, the placement of its engines and the weight of its payload. Another point for study is whether there is a need to use parachutes during landing.
One of the major issues in landing safely on Mars with humans on board is the way of slowing down the vehicle in landing so it won’t crush to the ground. The thin atmosphere of Mars poses a big problem for the weight of humans and machines because the passenger astronauts need to carry along with them some baggage. Without a dense atmosphere to obtain friction in landing, it would be very difficult to slow down with a heavier payload.
Other factors that affect the density of the atmosphere in Mars that could complicate landing are the weather, latitude and period of landing. Scientists are studying whether the spacecraft should proceed to the surface after arrival, or stay in the orbit before final landing. Researchers believe that parking in the orbit is safer because it provides caution and flexibility for the astronauts to prepare in case an intense dust storm strikes on the ground.
Planners are now studying if it is possible to separate the payloads in going down or altogether in one lot including humans. Landing altogether could be made possible, but it should be done in low elevations, and passengers must carry only a few luggages for a quick visit.
The proposition of sending down a cargo spacecraft first before dispatching the humans-carrying spacecraft is gaining a wide consensus among researchers. This process would allow the astronauts to stay longer, widen the scope of observation and provide enough time for the return trip.
The spacecraft intended to travel to Mars resembles the design of the old Apollo which has a large, dish-shaped heat shield that could help increase the intensity of friction attained when the spacecraft moves into the atmosphere, thus enabling it to slow down in landing.
When the spacecraft passes through the atmosphere in its attempt to lessen the speed, it goes back to its form in the orbit. At the proper scheduled time, the heat shield is again utilized by using a parachute as it turns to make the final cut through the atmosphere en route to Mars’ surface. In ensuring a smooth, successful landing, a range of powerful forces can then be fired from the spacecraft to slow down the intensity of downward forces.
But remember that if you happen to join the passengers, you have to take the risk of traveling to Mars because you are not provided with any insurance.