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#1 2002-07-07 16:11:08

Byron
Member
From: Florida, USA
Registered: 2002-05-16
Posts: 844

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

In regards to other threads dealing with the topic of children growing up on Mars, I've been wondering what it will be like for a child to be born and raised on Mars.

I think the biggest concern is the .38 g and how it will affect children's physiological development.  Many scientists tend to believe that Martian g is a fairly safe and healthy g for Earth people to live in, but at this point, it's virtually impossible to determine what adverse effects, if any, the lower gravity will have on Martian children's health as they grow towards adulthood.  We do know that bones and muscles develop according to the amount of stress placed upon them, so it would be reasonable to assume that without the weighted infant suits that Cindy mentioned in another thread, that weaker bones and muscles would result, perhaps leading to such maladies such as childhood osteoporosis  ???

But I hate the thought of those poor babies and young children having to wear those bulky, uncomfortable suits all the time, as a significant amount of material would have to be used to make up the weight difference. (Even lead would be light on Mars!)  One idea I've thought of to cope with this, is to simply make the Martian children bigger, and consequently more massive, and a good deal of gravity-related problems could be avoided as a result.

Go ahead and laugh if you'd like  tongue   But, seriously, folks, KSR brought up the idea of [i:post_uid3]uber[/i:post_uid3]-sized Martians, especially after the third or forth generation or so.  I think his hypothesis was that the low gravity allowed children to grow large without outside intervention, which is a reasonable thought.  But I think what is more likely to happen would be the "beanstalk syndrome," in which children would be very thin and spindly, with brittle bones and underdeveloped muscles.  On the other hand, if the growth of babies and tottlers were to be greatly accelerated through the use of genetic programming and on-going growth treatments, the body mass of children could be increased to mitigate the effects of the lower Martian g.  If a Martian 4-year old were as large as, let's say, an Earthling 10-year old, the extra mass would compensate for the lower downward pull of gravity, and the child's physical development would theoretically be healthier and more "normal" as a result.  Of course, tall Martian children would result in tall Martian adults, perhaps one-fourth to one-third taller than typical earthlings, but at least they'd be healthier Martians..LOL. 

In addition, an extra calcium-rich diet would probably be par for the course, as well as rigorous excercise programs for them.  Gotta keep those little ones busy  big_smile , lest they get into trouble...

Anyhow, it's just a thought...what are your ideas about children in the .38 g of Mars?

B

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#2 2002-07-07 19:20:40

Phobos
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Registered: 2002-01-02
Posts: 1,103

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

In a very twisted way, I think it could turn out beneficial for the future of spaceflight and interplanetary commerce if there was actually a sizable population of people on Mars who couldn't travel to Earth.  I think if anyone is going to rebel against the governments of Earth, it'll be these Mars-bound citizens who will undoubtedly think of Mars as their own and not property of the U.N. or the USA or whoever.  Anyways, I bet the profits from the Martian NBA will far surpass those of the Earth NBA.  Of course I'm going on the assumption that for someone raised on Mars, they won't feel adverse health affects unless they actually try to enter Earth's gravity well.


To achieve the impossible you must attempt the absurd

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#3 2002-07-07 22:24:51

Palomar
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From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

In regards to other threads dealing with the topic of children growing up on Mars, I've been wondering what it will be like for a child to be born and raised on Mars.

I think the biggest concern is the .38 g and how it will affect children's physiological development...so it would be reasonable to assume that without the weighted infant suits that Cindy mentioned in another thread...[/quote:post_uid3]
*Here's a partial repost of what I'd written earlier, which you mention [I've already touched on the lower-gravity issue, at least partially]:

"This is just ONE of the challenges of having a baby on Mars...particularly for those early settlers.  Providing adequate nutrition is another headache.  Suppose the child is lactose intolerant?  Can't just run down to the local Wal-Mart and pick up ProSobee or Enfamil because mom's breast milk makes baby sick, and the powdered cow's milk in the hab only gets spit back up. 

Based on all this and other related matters -- I didn't touch on the issue of DIAPERING, did I?  What will diapers be made out of?  Can't have disposable diapers there -- how will they be cleaned?  Babies go through LOTS of them, and the laundering process of cloth diapers is an everyday busy task in and of itself."

Other problems which immediately come to mind are foot wear for Marsian children; kids grow fast -- how to make more boots/shoes or alterable boots/shoes?  Better have a Marsian cobbler, or the equivalent thereof, at least in the early days of native Marsians being born.  Their clothing [even if weighted] will have to be easily alterable to accommodate growth spurts.

It's been anticipated at the message board previously that the children will receive good education relative to science, engineering, etc...fine, but what if a musical genius ala Mozart comes along?  Will musical instruments, art supplies, etc., be provided to stimulate creativity?  I suppose so; I hope so.

What worries me the most are the 1st and 2nd generation children especially; they will always being confined, either to a hab or to a spacesuit [if going outdoors], and will hear mom and dad or grandparents talking about bicycling, swimming, playing in parks, fishing, flying kites, etc., etc.  There'll be many things older relatives will have done on Earth that these kids will never get to do on Mars.  That might easily breed resentment.

I'll probably think of a few more things to add later. 

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#4 2002-07-08 05:47:57

Byron
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From: Florida, USA
Registered: 2002-05-16
Posts: 844

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

In a very twisted way, I think it could turn out beneficial for the future of spaceflight and interplanetary commerce if there was actually a sizable population of people on Mars who couldn't travel to Earth.  I think if anyone is going to rebel against the governments of Earth, it'll be these Mars-bound citizens who will undoubtedly think of Mars as their own and not property of the U.N. or the USA or whoever.  Anyways, I bet the profits from the Martian NBA will far surpass those of the Earth NBA.  Of course I'm going on the assumption that for someone raised on Mars, they won't feel adverse health affects unless they actually try to enter Earth's gravity well.[/quote:post_uid0]
I would have to agree...in order for a Martian society to develop independently from Earth, there will have to be a sizable population of "true-blue" (or should I say "true-red"??) Martians who will never come to Earth.  Not that this will be a problem:  A person born and raised on Mars coming to Earth would be the equivalent of one of us going into Jupiter's gravity well...I just don't see it happening without a great deal of hardship, such as being confined to a wheelchair, etc.

This is something that a future Martian society will not be able to get away from...a child born on Mars will most likely be a Martian for life, and therefore be a part of a whole new society apart from Earth, regardless of what people here on Earth want; not that this will be a bad thing, like Phobos has suggested...

---cont'd in next post....

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#5 2002-07-08 07:10:43

Byron
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From: Florida, USA
Registered: 2002-05-16
Posts: 844

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

"This is just ONE of the challenges of having a baby on Mars...particularly for those early settlers.  Providing adequate nutrition is another headache.  Suppose the child is lactose intolerant?  Can't just run down to the local Wal-Mart and pick up ProSobee or Enfamil because mom's breast milk makes baby sick, and the powdered cow's milk in the hab only gets spit back up. 

Based on all this and other related matters -- I didn't touch on the issue of DIAPERING, did I?  What will diapers be made out of?  Can't have disposable diapers there -- how will they be cleaned?  Babies go through LOTS of them, and the laundering process of cloth diapers is an everyday busy task in and of itself."

Other problems which immediately come to mind are foot wear for Marsian children; kids grow fast -- how to make more boots/shoes or alterable boots/shoes?  Better have a Marsian cobbler, or the equivalent thereof, at least in the early days of native Marsians being born.  Their clothing [even if weighted] will have to be easily alterable to accommodate growth spurts.

It's been anticipated at the message board previously that the children will receive good education relative to science, engineering, etc...fine, but what if a musical genius ala Mozart comes along?  Will musical instruments, art supplies, etc., be provided to stimulate creativity?  I suppose so; I hope so.

What worries me the most are the 1st and 2nd generation children especially; they will always being confined, either to a hab or to a spacesuit [if going outdoors], and will hear mom and dad or grandparents talking about bicycling, swimming, playing in parks, fishing, flying kites, etc., etc.  There'll be many things older relatives will have done on Earth that these kids will never get to do on Mars.  That might easily breed resentment.[/quote:post_uid0]
Thanks Cindy, for duplicating your previous post concerning Martian kids to this thread....

I think we can all pretty much agree that raising children on Mars will be one of the biggest challenges facing the new settlers from Earth.  For this reason, I would hope the new colonists would hold off having any children until the population of their community reaches a certain minimum level, perhaps a 1000 or so (the greater the number, the better) to better cater to the children's needs within the new settlement. 

I know many people are against the idea of genetic programming / engineering here on Earth, lest we create a "superior" race, a la Hitler, but on Mars, it may very well be a necessity in order to circumvent such problems Cindy has mentioned, such as lactose intolerance.  A child born with a disability or chronic illness such as asthma here on Earth has a reasonable expection of living a normal life, due to the great amount of resources we have available to us (at least in such places as the U.S., Europe and Australia.)  But the same child on Mars would be facing a world of woe, as it will be a hundred times more difficult to provide for him or her.  Importing things such as medical specialists and an endless variety of drugs, supplies, etc, from Earth will be very costly at best, impossible at worst.  For this reason, it would behoove the new settlers to take whatever steps possible to "engineer" healthy children in order to mitigate these difficulties as much as possible.

As for other weighty matters such as diapers and clothing for rapidly growing children...again, I think technology will be called upon to provide the solution, as well as the tried-and-true measures of just doing "without."  Things such as clothing manufacture and laundering will most likely be carried out by machines, and as far as shoes/boots are concerned...why not just have the kids go barefoot?  (Go ahead and laugh..I don't mind  wink  )  Making shoes is actually a very labor-consuming task, one that will be difficult, if not impossible for machines to perform, and therefore footwear would have to be imported from Earth, again at great expense.  (Can you imagine paying a $1000 or more for a pair of shoes that your kid will outgrow in six months or less??  I'm sorry, but my kids can just go barefoot..LOL.)  Having a cobbler would be nice...but I just don't see the community being able to spare that kind of labor, when everyone is so busy with things such as growing food and environmental control...

Cindy's concerns of children being exposed to tales of growing up on Earth and feeling resentment as a result are perfectly valid ones...especially when it comes to things such as sports and just runnng around outside  ???   The idea of "kiddie suits" for the kids to go outside...forget it...suits will be so expensive that making them all the different sizes you would need for children would be simply impractical, at least for people less than, let's say 5 feet tall.  This is why I sincerely hope that a decent-sized dome is constructed [i:post_uid0]before[/i:post_uid0] they start having babies...kids are by their nature quite rambunctious, and the fact that they will never be able to go outside will be quite troublesome, imo. (This goes for adults too...people do need their open space.)

However, there is a flip side to looking at this.  Just think of all the things that Martian children will be able to do in their native habitat due to the .38 g.  After all, the low g will make everyone a "superman," able to perform physical feats that Earth kids can only dream of doing.  Build a decent-sized halfpipe for young skateboarders, and just watch them perform astonishing feats of aerial acrobatics...perhaps the Martian kids will then consider themselves "privilaged" to live in Martian g, as opposed to living in the crushing gravity of Earth.  Pools will be a must, for sure, as they wouldn't take up much space, and will provide a venue for critical excercise and physical development for the young ones, as well as adults.

I could go on and on here, but I'll leave it up to you guys to comment further on this important topic...

B

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#6 2002-07-08 07:28:20

clark
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Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,166

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

Just thought I mention something:

ust think of all the things that Martian children will be able to do in their native habitat due to the .38 g.  After all, the low g will make everyone a  "superman," able to perform physical feats that Earth kids can only dream of doing.  Build a decent-sized halfpipe for young skateboarders, and just watch them perform astonishing feats of aerial acrobatics...perhaps the Martian kids will then consider themselves "privilaged" to live in Martian g, as opposed to living in the crushing gravity of Earth. [/quote:post_uid0]

Children born on Mars will not be "superhuman" compared to Earthling equivalents. Mars children will be exsposed by and large to a .38 gravity for their entire life- their muscles will adapat to that stress (unless extra stress is added)-  which means they will behave in a .38 gravity the same way we behave in a 1.0 gravity. We live in 1.0 so anything less allows us to be stronger than we are- it's like going from 100 pound weights to 38 pound weights- the mars kids will not have the same benefit- thats why they can't come back to Earth- it would be like going from 38 pound weights to 100 pounds for them.

Martians, left to their own, will never be stronger than Earthlings, and Earthlings will have an easier time in their environment.

Also, I'm not quite convinced that children would resent their inability to play certain sports- children are pretty adaptable- define their world and they more often than not find a way to live within that world. We have a hard time imagining life without certain sports or certain games- but these games are just that- games- as long as the fundamental principles of what a game or activity means can be reproduced on Mars, there shouldn't be  any "problems".

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#7 2002-07-08 14:03:48

Phobos
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Registered: 2002-01-02
Posts: 1,103

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

Other problems which immediately come to mind are foot wear for Marsian children; kids grow fast -- how to make more boots/shoes or alterable boots/shoes?  Better have a Marsian cobbler, or the equivalent thereof, at least in the early days of native Marsians being born.  Their clothing [even if weighted] will have to be easily alterable to accommodate growth spurts.
[/quote:post_uid0]

Way back I wrote a message suggesting that a textiles factory might be one of the first large scale industrial capabilities built on Mars.  If agriculture and/or synthetic materials can yield fibers to be used in clothing, it should be no problem setting up weaving machines.  Such a plant would also make it possible to make things like spacesuits without having to import them from Earth.

Cindy's concerns of children being exposed to tales of growing up on Earth and feeling resentment as a result are perfectly valid ones...especially when it comes to things such as sports and just runnng around outside     The idea of "kiddie suits" for the kids to go outside...forget it...suits will be so expensive that making them all the different sizes you would need for children would be simply impractical, at least for people less than, let's say 5 feet tall.  This is why I sincerely hope that a decent-sized dome is constructed before they start having babies...kids are by their nature quite rambunctious, and the fact that they will never be able to go outside will be quite troublesome, imo. (This goes for adults too...people do need their open space.)
[/quote:post_uid0]

I don't think envy of Earth by Mars children will hurt things though.  It could be a positive force to drive development of Mars.  I think a lot of the kids as they get older might actually relish the fact that they were born is such a far away place with wide open opportunities.  The possibility that they can't come to Earth will likely be a strong uniting factor among them.


To achieve the impossible you must attempt the absurd

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#8 2002-07-08 14:13:31

clark
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Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,166

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

A spacesuit is a technological marvel- it is more than fabric- and it needs to be more than fabric in a near vacum bathed in radiation... a space suit is a small spaceship. Making clothes or clogs is one thing- making a space suit- it took5000 years of science to make that possible- and a whole heck of a lot of resources and special factories to produce each custom one- on Mars you have to start considering how to mass-produce them...

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#9 2002-07-08 14:20:34

Phobos
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Registered: 2002-01-02
Posts: 1,103

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

A spacesuit is a technological marvel- it is more than fabric- and it needs to be more than fabric in a near vacum bathed in radiation... a space suit is a small spaceship. Making clothes or clogs is one thing- making a space suit- it took5000 years of science to make that possible- and a whole heck of a lot of resources and special factories to produce each custom one- on Mars you have to start considering how to mass-produce them...[/quote:post_uid0]

OK, so you can't build the [i:post_uid0]whole[/i:post_uid0] suit from a textiles plant but you could build a lot of it!  You would only need to import the mechanical/metallic parts of it assuming such a manufacturing ability wouldn't already exist.  Anyways, there was no reason to invent spacesuits 5000 years ago.  Space suits are just layers of material inflated to a certain psi with some life support equipment built in.  There's nothing particularly magical about them.


To achieve the impossible you must attempt the absurd

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#10 2002-07-08 14:46:41

clark
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Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,166

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

Space suits are just layers of material inflated to a certain psi with some life support equipment built in.[/quote:post_uid0]

And a nuclear reactor is a fancy way of heating a cup of coffee...

Is it wise to reduce our technical milestones to basic generalities? If we do so, we neccessarily neglect the profound complexity of the actual undertaking of human settlement of Mars. Not only that, you discredit any rational discussion regarding humans to mars becuase it reduces the possible problems to supposedly "simple" solutions.

Ingenuity cannot be forced. Innovation does not have a timetable (unless we discuss cars tongue ).

A space suit is a little more than fabric with some psi and some more fabric- to reduce it to such is to render any sensible discussion meaningless.   ???

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#11 2002-07-08 14:56:32

Palomar
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From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

In a very twisted way, I think it could turn out beneficial for the future of spaceflight and interplanetary commerce if there was actually a sizable population of people on Mars who couldn't travel to Earth.  [/quote:post_uid3]
*If they'd even want to come here.  Native-born Marsians might like to see grass growing freely, rain, oceans, to move about and breathe freely...but they'd also be coming to an overpopulated, polluted, violent planet.  We may be flattering ourselves to think many native-born Marsians might want to come here...

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#12 2002-07-08 15:04:24

Palomar
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From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

as far as shoes/boots are concerned...why not just have the kids go barefoot?  (Go ahead and laugh..I don't mind  wink  )  Making shoes is actually a very labor-consuming task, one that will be difficult, if not impossible for machines to perform, and therefore footwear would have to be imported from Earth, again at great expense.  [/quote:post_uid10]

Indoors, they could go barefoot.  They could also wear heavy-duty socks or slippers made of organic material.

I guess they'll never venture out unless some wealthy benefactors chip in for suits and boots made of various sizes for children, which belongs to no one child but rather can be borrowed like a formal dinner jacket at an upscale restaurant.  Perhaps even that is not feasible.

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#13 2002-07-08 15:08:02

Palomar
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From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

And a nuclear reactor is a fancy way of heating a cup of coffee...[/quote:post_uid3]
*Is THAT what's going on with morning drivers around here?!  Egad -- nuclear coffee!  Caffeine to the Nth degree!  :0

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#14 2002-07-08 16:31:16

Byron
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From: Florida, USA
Registered: 2002-05-16
Posts: 844

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

I don't think envy of Earth by Mars children will hurt things though.  It could be a positive force to drive development of Mars.  I think a lot of the kids as they get older might actually relish the fact that they were born is such a far away place with wide open opportunities.  The possibility that they can't come to Earth will likely be a strong uniting factor among them.
[/quote:post_uid0]

I agree...as long as reasonable opportunities are provided for recreation, I don't see any real problems developing with this, and could very well lead to a more healthier society than what we have here on Earth...

I guess they'll never venture out unless some wealthy benefactors chip in for suits and boots made of various sizes for children, which belongs to no one child but rather can be borrowed like a formal dinner jacket at an upscale restaurant.  Perhaps even that is not feasible.
[/quote:post_uid0]
That would be a great idea, actually, having let's say, four or five suits available in the smaller sizes, so that kids can be taken out on field trips on occasion...how else will they be able to learn about the Martian outdoors, etc...  I'm sure people on Earth will be glad to donate to help out the first generation of Martian children, so this is something that'll probably be pretty likely to happen...

B

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#15 2002-07-09 08:10:04

clark
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Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,166

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

That would be a great idea, actually, having let's say, four or five suits available in the smaller sizes, so that kids can be taken out on field trips on occasion...how else will they be able to learn about the Martian outdoors, etc..[/quote:post_uid0]

No one will ever be in the Martian outdoors- it will always be seen through a plate of glass.

My guess would be that they pile the kids into a rover and take a field trip- kids have a tendancy to get lost or hurt when left to their own devices.

Also, I would imagine that there would be quite a few telemetry robots that could be used to explore Mars (like the last Mars Rover).

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#16 2002-07-09 08:23:43

Palomar
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From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

No one will ever be in the Martian outdoors- it will always be seen through a plate of glass.[/quote:post_uid3]
*Hmmmm.  You sound so certain of this. 

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#17 2002-07-09 08:57:16

clark
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Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,166

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

Quote (clark @ July 09 2002,15:10)
                                      No one will ever be in the Martian outdoors- it will always be seen through a plate of glass.


*Hmmmm.  You sound so certain of this.  [/quote:post_uid0]

Okay, barring massive terraforming, no one will ever be in the Martian outdoors for at least 1000 years. So the only way Mars will ever be seen is through a piece of glass (either space suit or base/rover).

Unless you know of a way that humans can breate near vacum. I would love to hear about that. :0

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#18 2002-07-09 09:00:57

Palomar
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From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

Unless you know of a way that humans can breate near vacum. I would love to hear about that. :0[/quote:post_uid3]
*I think it's called "a spacesuit."  <big evil grin>

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#19 2002-07-09 09:12:31

clark
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Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

[Rolls Eyes]

Then they are still experiencing the Martian Outdoors through a plate of glass.

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#20 2002-07-09 09:38:55

Palomar
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From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

[Rolls Eyes]

Then they are still experiencing the Martian Outdoors through a plate of glass.[/quote:post_uid3]
*My mistake; I didn't read your mention of spacesuits in the previous post.  Sorry about that.  I'd better get that cup of coffee.

Well of course, technically it will still be through a plate of glass -- logical.  But I thought you were referring to people never being able to step foot outside of a hab.

And quit rolling your eyes...you'll give yourself a headache.  wink

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#21 2002-07-09 19:55:10

Shaun Barrett
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From: Cairns, Queensland, Australia
Registered: 2001-12-28
Posts: 2,843

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

Clark is most likely correct in his estimate of a thousand years before a human gazes across the Martian landscape with the naked eye.
   Even if we assume that terraforming is begun soon and liberates 500 millibars of CO2 from the caps and regolith quite "quickly" ... in say, 100 years, there will still be a problem with using the naked eye.
   Most of the artists' impressions of colonists working outside in shirtsleeves and using only simple "breathers", show the masks covering their noses and mouths but not their eyes. This wouldn't work! Not many people realise that the so-called clear window of the eye, the cornea, has no blood circulation except at its extreme periphery. It relies heavily on atmospheric oxygen diffusing into it from the air. Without that O2, the cells on the cornea's surface become hypoxic and begin to close down physiologically. This results in the swelling and opacification (clouding) of the cornea and the individual so affected becomes, at least temporarily, visually impaired.
   So we will need "full-face breathers" until we fully terraform Mars and bring about an Earth-like N2/O2 atmosphere. When this is likely to happen (or if) is anybody's guess, but Clark's thousand years might be pretty close to the truth.
                                      smile


The word 'aerobics' came about when the gym instructors got together and said: If we're going to charge $10 an hour, we can't call it Jumping Up and Down.   - Rita Rudner

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#22 2002-07-10 21:07:54

Palomar
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From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

Clark is most likely correct in his estimate of a thousand years before a human gazes across the Martian landscape with the naked eye.
   Even if we assume that terraforming is begun soon and liberates 500 millibars of CO2 from the caps and regolith quite "quickly" ... in say, 100 years, there will still be a problem with using the naked eye.
   Most of the artists' impressions of colonists working outside in shirtsleeves and using only simple "breathers", show the masks covering their noses and mouths but not their eyes. This wouldn't work! Not many people realise that the so-called clear window of the eye, the cornea, has no blood circulation except at its extreme periphery. It relies heavily on atmospheric oxygen diffusing into it from the air. Without that O2, the cells on the cornea's surface become hypoxic and begin to close down physiologically. This results in the swelling and opacification (clouding) of the cornea and the individual so affected becomes, at least temporarily, visually impaired.[/quote:post_uid3]
*Wow.  sad  I didn't consider all that; thanks, Shaun.  I didn't take into consideration pressure, gases, etc., upon the eye.  You're right...artists' conceptions have been misleading.  Oh well.  ???

I wonder if always being enclosed will produce an abnormal number of agoraphobia cases in native Marsians.  Perhaps many of them will have nightmares of suddenly finding themselves out in the wide open -- even if in the dream state they're breathing and nothing is menacing them.  For others, I suppose it'd be a "thrill dream," like flying dreams for us. 

::shrugs::  Just thinking aloud...

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#23 2002-07-11 11:17:53

C M Edwards
Member
From: Lake Charles LA USA
Registered: 2002-04-29
Posts: 1,011

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

What would be the odds of survival and prospects for a child born to a crew member of a Mars Direct style mission?


"We go big, or we don't go."  - GCNRevenger

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#24 2002-07-11 11:23:11

clark
Member
Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,166

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

ZERO.

A Baby would not survive the stress of the mission and their would be inadquete support to maintain them on Mars, or in transit (either direction).

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#25 2002-07-11 11:28:23

Adrian
Moderator
From: London, United Kingdom
Registered: 2001-09-04
Posts: 642
Website

Re: Children growing up on Mars - ..problems and possible solutions...

I don't think it'd be absolutely zero. It would be fairly low, though, and obviously the odds would depend on when the baby was born, whether the mission was going well (up to that point), the mission design (e.g. do they have artificial gravity?). Given the right conditions, the odds might not be too bad. But even then, the risks would be completely unacceptable considering the fact that a pregnancy is perfectly avoidable.


Editor of New Mars

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