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#51 2020-07-11 12:52:13

Registered: 2011-12-29
Posts: 3,552

Re: Is terraforming Mars impossible? Maybe not...

In my opinion, much of the water would stay up there.   As it is, it "May" take micrometeorites to seed clouds up there as it is. … ds-on-mars

So, water without grains to condense on, can exist as a vapor in a super cooled state.  And water vapor is very much lighter than the CO2 dominated Martian atmosphere.  So, and this is just my suspicion, I have been wrong many times before, you may overwhelm the number of grains available for condensation.   Wash the downwards perhaps.  Clean the atmosphere.

I like your thinking I hope you will tolerate what I am going to pass by you.

I have often thought about the energy of elevation.  An air molecule on top of the mountain has more energy than one at base level, in the sense of elevation.  So, if you thought of it as a weight, could you drop that weight to generate power?

If you compressed and condensed CO2 out of the Martian atmosphere, into a liquid, and had the means, could you run it down a mountain like hydro-electric?  I do not have the mental tools to answer this.  We do have an expense, that is condensing the CO2 into a liquid.  But it is probably darn cold at most times up on the top of Olympus Mons.  And particularly at night I am thinking.  But solar power is likely rather good.  It takes a really big global dust storm to blot it out.  And even then it is still probably cold.  Just a silly notion true.  However, if you have liquid CO2, then if you are passing this downward through a rock tunnel, then perhaps a bit of geothermal boiling?

But also, if you send the liquid CO2 all the way down the mountain, and it arrives as a liquid, you may boil it with solar or nuclear and run a turbine.  And there may be a way to condense water vapor with it as well.  I think these things from time to time.  If you were a dog, I would have just thrown you a chew toy.  Hope that's OK.


This one is a bit more trouble.  If you have heated Martian air and you flow it upwards through a conduit to the top of the mountain and it has water vapor in it, perhaps saturated???  What?  What might the pressure of the updraft be at the top of the mountain?  The flow rate.
Of course all of that will also depend on the size of your conduit, and how hot the air is. 

As I have said I do not even come close for the mental capability it takes to even try to get rough numbers.

We may consider Lava Tubes, sealed, and perhaps connected by boring tunnels, or on surface conduits.

I feel a bit like a jerk, doing this to you, but maybe you will accept it as some workout for yourself.


Not done smile

If you do succeed in loading up the Martian atmosphere at levels useful, with extra water vapor, then I also want to look at a "Cloud Diode".

As I visualize this, water vapor even super cooled will be a greenhouse gas, perhaps in all of the skies of Mars.  But if you were really good at pumping vapor up there you may seed the clouds with grains, perhaps from a Martian moon.  And if you have the correct balance, you might just get the planet to generate a cloud deck more on it's dark side and less so where the sun shines.  If it is done right, the clouds may not descend all the way to the ground during the night, and may vaporize in the sunshine, and climb back up to the high skies.

The polar hoods of Martian winter suggest what this might be like. … ese%20look.

Called the polar hood, the clouds drop precipitation which thickens the cap. The north polar cap is symmetrical around the pole and covers the surface down to about 60 degrees latitude. High resolution images taken with NASA's Mars Global Surveyor show that the northern polar cap is covered mainly by pits, cracks, small bumps and knobs that give it a cottage cheese look. The pits are spaced close together relative to the very different depressions in the south polar cap.

However, if we were to introduce some greenhouse gasses to the atmosphere of Mars, including water vapor, we might expect the Martian poles to heat up most.  If we do get the CO2 vaporized, and prohibit more dry ice forming, then we should have a atmosphere of a mean pressure of 11 mbar, rather than the 5.5 mbar we have now.

I have read, that that is enough for real snow storms.  In this case I am hoping that the snow would come more from vaporized polar water ice than from the water vapor we transferred to on high.

We would be basically be doing a Venus run-away-greenhouse effect to Mars,   But we should be able to modulate, and control the run-away.

If we could generate a Cloud Diode, that should help the dark side of the planet retain heat, and for the sunward side to accumulate heat.

But, Maybe smile


Last edited by Void (2020-07-11 13:20:11)

I like people who criticize angels dancing on a pinhead.  I also like it when angels dance on my pinhead.


#52 2020-08-09 18:07:00

From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,870

Re: Is terraforming Mars impossible? Maybe not...

A possible view


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