Buzz Aldrin at the Space for Society symposium. Image Credit: CC BY 2.5 Bryan Tong Minh
Apollo astronaut Buzz Aldrin believes that more should be done to enable the colonization of Mars.
Speaking at an online question-and-answer session with social media site Reddit, the second man to ever step foot on the moon put forward his belief that mankind's next step in the exploration of space should be to colonize the Red Planet.
"There is very little doubt, in my mind, that what the next monumental achievement of humanity will be the first landing by an Earthling, a human being, on the planet Mars," he said.
"And I expect that within two decades of the 50th anniversary of the first landing on the moon … America will lead an international presence on Planet Mars."
Aldrin suggested that anyone who does go to Mars shouldn't return to Earth straight away but should instead be part of an effort to build up a long-term presence on the planet, something he personally refers to as "permanence".
"The first human beings to land on Mars should not come back to Earth," he said. "They should be the beginning of a build-up of a colony/settlement. A settlement you can visit once or twice, come back, and then decide you want to settle."
The Apollo astronaut also spoke a bit about his historic trip to the moon in 1969.
"There is no place on earth as desolate as what I was viewing in those first moments on the lunar surface," he said. "Because I realised what I was looking at, towards the horizon and in every direction, had not changed in hundreds, thousands of years."
Source: News.com.au | Comments (30)
Mars, Buzz Aldrin