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#1 2002-02-01 10:38:02

Sagebrush
Member
Registered: 2002-01-31
Posts: 7

Re: Need help spreading the word - Water on Mars?

I recently tried to start a Red/Green Mars debate amongst
the general populaton on another board. Tried and failed!
It was at www.desertusa.com, on the enviromental board.
All I got was a snide remark about the lack of water on Mars.
I would appreciate any help from people here to back me up there... I really think it is time for people who believe in space colonization(especially on Mars) to start spreading their views
on a broader basis.
A little about myself... I tend to look at the big picture. I believe that the mission of humans should be to spread Earth's life beyond Earth, as sooner or later a permanent extinction level event will occur. This is also what the
founder(s) of the Mars Society believe, as I saw on TV.

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#2 2002-02-01 11:42:58

Stu
Member
From: Kendal, Cumbria, England
Registered: 2001-09-04
Posts: 318
Website

Re: Need help spreading the word - Water on Mars?

Don't think I'm going to be much help with you there, being a Raving Red ;-) but best of luck with your efforts, the word needs spreading as far and wide as possible. But don't worry about the lack of interest on that Board, we have a *long* way to go before the exploration of Mars is prominent in most people's minds. Just enjoy being here on New Mars and among friends :-)

Stu


Stuart Atkinson

Skywatching Blog: http://journals.aol.com/stuartatk/Cumbrian-Sky

Astronomical poetry, including mars rover poems: http://journals.aol.com/stuartatk/TheVerse

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#3 2002-02-01 17:04:24

Sagebrush
Member
Registered: 2002-01-31
Posts: 7

Re: Need help spreading the word - Water on Mars?

Thanks for the moral support! Even if you are a Red.   tongue

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#4 2002-02-02 02:22:38

Josh Cryer
Administrator
Registered: 2001-09-29
Posts: 3,830

Re: Need help spreading the word - Water on Mars?

I headed over to www.desertusa.com out of curiosity and saw the thread in question. When that guy said Mars was missing a few trillion gallons of water, he wasn't entirely off. As far as we know Mars has only about 10% of the water it once had. Which is about 3 trillion gallons if I did my math right.


Some useful links while MER are active. Offical site NASA TV JPL MER2004 Text feed
--------
The amount of solar radiation reaching the surface of the earth totals some 3.9 million exajoules a year.

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#5 2002-02-04 20:32:41

Sagebrush
Member
Registered: 2002-01-31
Posts: 7

Re: Need help spreading the word - Water on Mars?

Where did you get your numbers? If 90% of the former total
is 3 trillion gallons, than 100% would be about 3.3 trillion gallons.
Doesn't seem like near enough water to create the channels. Those channels dwarf our biggest known flood, the Missoula flood 10,000 years ago. That flood had a flow rate of several CUBIC miles per hour, and lasted several days.
Of course, the martian channels flow rate would have depended on gradient and depth, plus it is unknown how many floods there were. Naturally, the lower gravity would affect the equation as well, possibly arguing for more water.

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#6 2002-02-04 20:37:37

Sagebrush
Member
Registered: 2002-01-31
Posts: 7

Re: Need help spreading the word - Water on Mars?

Whoops, did I misread your post? Did you mean 3 trillion is the amount missing, or the present total?

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#7 2002-02-04 21:01:49

Sagebrush
Member
Registered: 2002-01-31
Posts: 7

Re: Need help spreading the word - Water on Mars?

Sorry for the triple post. In your post "Water Ice on Mars" you
state that there is about 300,000 cubic miles of water ice on the north polar ice cap. That translates into ALOT more water
than 3, 30, or even 300 trillion gallons. There is over 100 billion
cubic feet in a cubic mile. Assuming that a cubic foot only had
one gallon in it, that would be 100 billion gallons per cubic mile.
lets see here, 1,000 times a 100 billion is 100 trillion, times 300
is 30000 trillion gallons in total. This is a very rough guestimate. smile

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#8 2002-02-05 01:52:03

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

Re: Need help spreading the word - Water on Mars?

This may be a touch pedantic, but I was curious to find out just how many gallons of water there are in 300,000 cubic miles of ice.
   First of all I had to decide whether to calculate for U.S. gallons or Imperial. Since America's contribution to Mars exploration has outstripped Britain's by some orders of magnitude(!), U.S. gallons it is.
   It transpires that 1 cubic foot of water actually contains a fraction over 7.48 U.S. gallons. From which a little bit of arithmetic brought me to the conclusion that 300,000 cubic miles of ice translates to 330,335 trillion U.S. gallons!
   This calculation is not strictly accurate in as much as it doesn't take into account the density change which occurs when ice changes to water. Since ice is not as dense as water, it is necessary to multiply by 0.92 to get the actual volume of water released.
   Thus, the northern ice cap represents about 303,908 trillion U.S. gallons of water.
   But, of course, this probably doesn't comprise all the water on Mars. There may still be substantial aquifers containing several times this amount, hidden underground. Those tantalising early results from Odyssey may be trying to tell us just that! Only time will tell.
                                                                  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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#9 2002-02-05 09:21:49

Josh Cryer
Administrator
Registered: 2001-09-29
Posts: 3,830

Re: Need help spreading the word - Water on Mars?

Hmm, I guess my guess was off then. smile


Some useful links while MER are active. Offical site NASA TV JPL MER2004 Text feed
--------
The amount of solar radiation reaching the surface of the earth totals some 3.9 million exajoules a year.

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#10 2002-02-05 13:31:46

Sagebrush
Member
Registered: 2002-01-31
Posts: 7

Re: Need help spreading the word - Water on Mars?

In one of JC's posts I read that the ice is rather rapidly dwindling. At the rate he specified, the ice should have been gone long ago. I wonder if there is something replenishing it
on a periodic basis, like hydrothermal action? Also, Mars is not quite dead, there is a potential for renewed volcanism and all the effects associated with volcanism could come into play, such as an increase in atmospheric gases.

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#11 2002-02-05 15:06:59

Josh Cryer
Administrator
Registered: 2001-09-29
Posts: 3,830

Re: Need help spreading the word - Water on Mars?

The ice that is rapidly dwindling is CO2 (carbon dioxide) not water ice (H2O). The south redisual polar cap is receeding about 3-4 meters per year, but this recession has only been observable since MGS arrived (there was a recession during the Viking years too).

I think that this is just a normal life cycle, now whether or not it can continue, I don't know for certain. I suspect it will probably continue, since Mars seems to be in a global warming stage at the momment.

BTW, when I said that there was 3 trillion gallons of water (which was later corrected to 300 trillion US gallons- unless I did my math right and Shaun is incorrect) , I meant that that was the [i:post_uid1]current[/i:post_uid1] ammount of water. The actual ammount that is [i:post_uid1]required[/i:post_uid1] for the ancient ocean is more in the area of 3 quadrillion US gallons.

I suspect that volcanism has completely ceased long ago. Molten planet cores require gravimetric friction, that is, of that of a large moon or an ocean. We know that Mars doesn't have a molten core because it has no magnetic field (molten cores produce a magnetic dynamo).


Some useful links while MER are active. Offical site NASA TV JPL MER2004 Text feed
--------
The amount of solar radiation reaching the surface of the earth totals some 3.9 million exajoules a year.

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