NASA Working On Transforming Mars to Make It Habitable For Humans

NASA Working On Transforming Mars to Make It Habitable For Humans

An ongoing program at the Pentagon’s advanced research division is looking forward to create engineered organisms that can eventually transform the Red Planet into something more Earth-like.

It is clear that if ever humans live on Mars without being confined inside man-made structures, the planet’s climate and surface would need to be radically altered to make it suitable for human survival.

According to NASA, Mars weather condition and climate features potentially dangerous planet-wide dust storms, low gravity, and its thin atmosphere, plus increased distance from the sun, which makes it a cold place for any humans to settle.

The average temperature on the Red Planet is 50 degrees Celsius (-122 degrees Fahrenheit).

As described in a report by Vice’s Motherboard, the alterations on the Red Planet could mean introducing genetically engineered plants, algae and other organisms that could start heating up the planet and possibly even thicken its atmosphere.

This process of intentionally changing a planet’s climate to support human life is known as terraforming, and the Pentagon’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) said this week that it is already laying the foundation for such organism engineering.

Alicia Jackson, deputy director of DARPA’s Biological Technologies Office, said, “For the first time, we have the technological toolkit to transform not just hostile places here on Earth, but to go into space not just to visit, but to stay”.

Jackson said DARPA and its partners have designed the ‘Google Maps of genomes’, using this system, scientists will be able to quickly sift through the genomes of numerous organisms that already exist on Earth.

They will also be able to quickly identify specific genes and pinpoint where they are located on the genome of an organism, Jackson added.


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