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Aldrin implores world to step up Mars efforts

Posted on Wednesday, 9 July, 2014 | Comment icon 30 comments

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: | Comments (30)

Tags: Mars, Buzz Aldrin

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #21 Posted by The Puzzler on 10 July, 2014, 12:24
My idea of a "better mankind" is quite different to yours then.
Comment icon #22 Posted by toast on 10 July, 2014, 13:16
Space exploration is not just about to drill holes in celestial bodies and to spin around the earth for some spectacular views. As cosmic radiation is a major thread to humans in space a lot of research is performed in the section on cancer research and maybe one day this research will lead to the elemination of one of the key threads to individuals. Some examples here:
Comment icon #23 Posted by Ashyne on 13 July, 2014, 2:00
Comment icon #24 Posted by coolguy on 13 July, 2014, 3:30
We will never see men on mars in our life times or maybe never at all Its all scince fiction.lets put back man on the moon frist and go from there
Comment icon #25 Posted by Antilles on 13 July, 2014, 5:29
I think NASA will send a mission to Mars but it won't be in my lifetime. It's a great idea though.
Comment icon #26 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 13 July, 2014, 10:02
What makes it science fiction? Why do you think the insurmountable problems are that mean we will never land there? There are difficulties sure, exposure to radiation being the main one, but there are no real technological show stoppers. No problems that couldn't be overcome in the next ten to twenty years. NASA has no interest in returning to the Moon, they've been there, done that and got the [s]tee-shirt[/s]. Other space agencies are looking to the Moon. NASA believe that missions to Mars are possible, I don't doubt them. I don't know how old you are or how long you e... [More]
Comment icon #27 Posted by skookum on 13 July, 2014, 10:29
I am 40 and don't expect to see a human foot on Mars in my lifetime. Technology wise I think we could pull it off, but financially it is probably another 60 years away.
Comment icon #28 Posted by gatekeeper32 on 13 July, 2014, 22:18
As an old friend of my said be more concern with the home you living in now then the one you have yet to move to.
Comment icon #29 Posted by cyclopes500 on 15 July, 2014, 13:12
Why don't they just send death row convicts to Mars and get them to set up some sort of base or facility in the form of specially designed DIY kit. If they do the job they get set free. If they don't they die. If they succeed they come back heroes and get a second chance at being decent humans? I mean Texas death row must have at least 1 expendable inmate that has the brains to put a computer, kit car and a garden shed together.
Comment icon #30 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 15 July, 2014, 21:44
Yeah the British Empire did something similar, it was called transportation and it was not Britain's finest hour. Most of the world has moved on from the unethical behaviour of two centuries ago, it seems you haven't.

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