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#1 2004-12-16 16:08:06

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

Re: The Pipelines of Mars - Move over, canals!

Hello all.  Errorist has had another odd idea.  That in itself is not extraordinary, but as this one might actually work, I thought it worth mentioning in the terraforming forum.

A rather odd ERRORIST thread on pipelines

A pole-to-equator pipeline of modest diameter (a few meters or so) could carry a steady flow of methane from the martian pole to its equatorial regions with a substantially reduced need for pumping.  The difference in potential energy between the lower latitudes and the poles would be sufficient to keep the gas moving.  This could provide a convenient means of getting Mars' hydrogen from the polar regions, where it seems mostly concentrated, to the dryer equatorial regions whose climactic conditions are (comparatively) milder. 

Bases and small scale settlements would have no need of such a huge natural gas pipeline.  However, a large city might.


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

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#2 2004-12-16 18:02:06

ERRORIST
Member
From: OXFORD ALABAMA
Registered: 2004-01-28
Posts: 1,182

Re: The Pipelines of Mars - Move over, canals!

How would it work on the moon? I think it makes one revolution every 29 days or is it even spinning?Mars sounds good. Is there a big difference in the circumference of the poles and equator?

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#3 2020-02-09 02:11:08

Calliban
Member
From: Northern England, UK
Registered: 2019-08-18
Posts: 550

Re: The Pipelines of Mars - Move over, canals!

Interesting thread.  On Earth, large diameter pipelines are one of the most energy efficient ways of moving bulk commodities.  On Mars, it is easy to imagine a global network of cast basalt pipes transporting air, liquid CO2 and water, to cities on every part of the planet.  Could we use pipelines to transport solid goods also?


Interested in space science, engineering and technology.

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#4 2020-02-09 08:30:01

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,875

Re: The Pipelines of Mars - Move over, canals!

In principle there's no reason why you couldn't have canals inside insulated pipes, with the interior being heated above zero celsius by PV panels or other energy systems on the surface. The canals could be used for transport of goods by narrow boats.

I would query though why we would go to that expense.

Pipeline transfer of liquid CO2 and water sounds more likely, though probably not for the first few decades. For the first few decades I think the emphasis will be on road transport of essentials, because the population levels won't justify pipeline construction. Remember also that the likelihood is that the Mars settlement will have very efficient forms of water recycling, minimising the need for importation of water into the settlement.

Calliban wrote:

Interesting thread.  On Earth, large diameter pipelines are one of the most energy efficient ways of moving bulk commodities.  On Mars, it is easy to imagine a global network of cast basalt pipes transporting air, liquid CO2 and water, to cities on every part of the planet.  Could we use pipelines to transport solid goods also?


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#5 2020-02-09 09:30:46

Calliban
Member
From: Northern England, UK
Registered: 2019-08-18
Posts: 550

Re: The Pipelines of Mars - Move over, canals!

Not something we would do in the early days of Mars settlement I don't think.  This sort of infrastructure makes sense if you need to ship a lot of raw materials and/or freight from one place to another.  If you are operating a mine for example, that is producing 20million tonnes of iron ore each year and you want to ship it to a city with a big steel works 1000km away, then a 1m diameter pipeline, carrying floating capsules at 2m/s, will get the job done at a very low energy cost per tonne/km.  It wouldn't make sense trying to heat the water.  Rather, we would put some sort of antifreeze (salt) into it and bury it under a few feet of soil to protect it from temperature fluctuations.

When serious colonisation of Mars begins and millions of people move there, we will find there is a mismatch between where we concentrate industrial capacity and people and where the raw materials are.  To make steel, we would need iron ore, electricity and a reducing agent (methane) would be useful, if Mars has any.  To a certain extent, we would try and move production to where the most logistically difficult resource is.  But either way, some resources will need to be transported.  Finished steel may be needed at some other city, maybe on the other side of the planet.  Without any seas or oceans to get in the way, we can transport materials anywhere on the planet using roads, railways, pipelines, etc.  Pipelines are simply an energy efficient, though slow way of doing this.

Last edited by Calliban (2020-02-09 09:34:37)


Interested in space science, engineering and technology.

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#6 2020-02-09 09:39:14

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,869

Re: The Pipelines of Mars - Move over, canals!

There is a newer pipeline topic that was created by Void that has many pages developed for the above purposes.

Power Distribution by pipelines on Mars.

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#7 2020-02-09 10:17:38

Calliban
Member
From: Northern England, UK
Registered: 2019-08-18
Posts: 550

Re: The Pipelines of Mars - Move over, canals!

I have moved the discussion as Spacenut suggested.  I wasn't familiar with Void's topic.  He is visionary in many ways.


Interested in space science, engineering and technology.

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