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#1 2014-01-12 13:21:13

Quaoar
Member
Registered: 2013-12-13
Posts: 592

Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Many geologists think that Mars would be rich of opals, that may become the most valuable gemstones. Mars opals may be solded at Christies auctions for a lot of money.

But, what will be happen if we find an alien microbic life, based on a genetical information chain different from our DNA?

I think the fall-out of such discovery may be worth billions of dollars of biotechnology patents.

Last edited by Quaoar (2014-01-12 13:23:30)

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#2 2014-01-12 14:05:54

louis
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From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 6,308

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

I agree discovery of "alternative" DNA on Mars would be of incalculable monetary value.

But I would add -

1. In the first few decades ordinary regolith will have very high value due to demand from universities and research institutes across Earth.

2.  Rare meteorites on Earth already command huge prices.   Mars meteorites will command similarly high values from universities and private collectors.


There are many ways in which a nascent Mars colony could generate revenue.  How much, for instance, would someone like the British artist Damien Hirst be prepared to pay to have a sculpture taken to Mars and erected there, making him the first ever artist to exhibit on the planet? Although you might not be able to buy land on Mars, there is no reason in my view that the sculpture itself should not be sold on Earth - again, as the first art object on Mars it will have intrinsic value.


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

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#3 2014-01-12 14:21:10

Terraformer
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From: Logres
Registered: 2007-08-27
Posts: 3,356
Website

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Seriously? You think anyone would tolerate a company claiming ownership of the genetic code of Martian life? Well, I suppose the state would, which is pretty sickening...

I think the biggest Martian business will be selling stuff to Martians. As far as export goes, what is there that would make much sense? Unless you can find a unique geological process that only occurred on Mars, they can get stuff from asteroids or Terra herself.


"I guarantee you that at some point, everything's going to go south on you, and you're going to say, 'This is it, this is how I end.' Now you can either accept that, or you can get to work." - Mark Watney

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#4 2014-01-12 17:35:43

louis
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From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 6,308

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Terraformer wrote:

Seriously? You think anyone would tolerate a company claiming ownership of the genetic code of Martian life? Well, I suppose the state would, which is pretty sickening...

I think the biggest Martian business will be selling stuff to Martians. As far as export goes, what is there that would make much sense? Unless you can find a unique geological process that only occurred on Mars, they can get stuff from asteroids or Terra herself.

You can patent Earthbound DNA code - did you not know that? I think if you brought genetic code back to Earth it would be patentable.  (Incidentally I never approved of patenting DNA code).

There are lots and lots of different sources of revenue.

We know from lunar regolith that rare regolith from non-terrestial environments are worth huge amounts of money.

However there are other less obvious suggestions. Mars would be the ultimate safe storage point for Earth's cultural heritage, perhaps digitised. Some of the larger libraries and museums might well be interested in paying for that safe storage.

I think there would be competition among the world's leading universities to establish the first research institution on Mars.


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

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#5 2014-01-12 19:49:59

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 21,860

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Regolith will deffinetly be high on the return but another that the rovers found are meteorites.

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#6 2014-01-13 03:58:57

Quaoar
Member
Registered: 2013-12-13
Posts: 592

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Terraformer wrote:

Seriously? You think anyone would tolerate a company claiming ownership of the genetic code of Martian life? Well, I suppose the state would, which is pretty sickening...

I think the biggest Martian business will be selling stuff to Martians. As far as export goes, what is there that would make much sense? Unless you can find a unique geological process that only occurred on Mars, they can get stuff from asteroids or Terra herself.

Even if we cannot directly patent the XNA of an hypotetical alien bacteria, in studing it we can learn a lot of new synthesis paths and use this knowledge to develope new biotech devicies, that can surely be patented and sold for a lot of money.

Last edited by Quaoar (2014-01-13 03:59:50)

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#7 2014-01-13 04:28:55

Terraformer
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From: Logres
Registered: 2007-08-27
Posts: 3,356
Website

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Urgh. That's disgusting.


"I guarantee you that at some point, everything's going to go south on you, and you're going to say, 'This is it, this is how I end.' Now you can either accept that, or you can get to work." - Mark Watney

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#8 2014-01-13 08:59:36

louis
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From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 6,308

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

SpaceNut wrote:

Regolith will deffinetly be high on the return but another that the rovers found are meteorites.

Yes, meteorites will be close to the top of the list.

I have no doubt that in the early stages through TV and film rights, commercial mission sponsorship, regolith and meteorites sales and other projects one could easily raise more than a billion dollars in the first decade, which would go a long way to defraying mission costs.


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

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#9 2014-01-13 11:28:46

Void
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Registered: 2011-12-29
Posts: 3,710

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

This is close to the already mentioned "through TV and film rights, but I wonder about products of creativity of people living on Mars.  Art, Inventions, Software.

The only reason I bring it up is the saying "Necessity is the mother of invention".

I am thinking that "Martians" will have a different stimulus than Earth people, so their thought processes may come up with some otherwise unlikely formulations for arts and industry.

It might be valueable that creative types be encourged to go to Mars.


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

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#10 2014-01-13 19:27:07

louis
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From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 6,308

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Void wrote:

This is close to the already mentioned "through TV and film rights, but I wonder about products of creativity of people living on Mars.  Art, Inventions, Software.

The only reason I bring it up is the saying "Necessity is the mother of invention".

I am thinking that "Martians" will have a different stimulus than Earth people, so their thought processes may come up with some otherwise unlikely formulations for arts and industry.

It might be valueable that creative types be encourged to go to Mars.

I agree. It would be a mistake to restrict it to purely those talented in science and technology. 

We need creative types and we also need entrepreneurs.  I was rather taken recently by a book I read about Roman London - about how in the space of a few years the Roman Empire's entrepreneurs fell on Londonium and turned it from marsh to marble,through enterprise.

Of course, I am not claiming an exact parallel. But we need entrepreneurial thinking as well.

One idea I had - I just throw this out - is you could have a relay from Mars to Earth, where a kid at a birthday party on Earth actually gets to operate a robot on Mars - maybe draw his/her name in the sand, or laser his/her name into rock on the planet. It is the sort of thing that might appeal to the megarich on Earth. Or maybe the kid gets to scoop up a thimbleful of regolith that is later packaged and brought back to Earth with an accompanying certificate.  If you are charging $10,000 per thimbleful this sort of thing will become economically viable.


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

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#11 2014-01-13 21:00:38

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 21,860

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Signals for any such TV rights would need to be scrambled to protect the feed that in itself might be breaking law for thoses that funded the expedition.
Sure the art surely will come but the returns wont be to those making it.

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#12 2014-01-14 10:33:28

Decimator
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Registered: 2011-11-20
Posts: 39

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

I don't think there will be much commerce between Mars and Earth.  Naturally, there will be information products, but they aren't likely to be much different from what we have here.  The best sources of wealth are small bodies like Luna and NEOs.  Places with resources(propellant, fissionables, structural materials, etc), very low gravity, and no atmosphere.  I think we'll see a lot of commerce between small bodies and whatever places we colonize, but little between large bodies.

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#13 2014-01-14 11:20:46

GW Johnson
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From: McGregor, Texas USA
Registered: 2011-12-04
Posts: 4,363
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Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

I'd hazard the guess that Decimator is partly right ("hi" by the way,  Decimator).  For physical commodities that have to be shipped,  transformed to other physical form,  then shipped,  the costs of space travel will push that business toward airless low-gravity bodies.

Intellectual property can be transferred best electronically/by radio.  I see no reason that there could not be trade in intellectual property between Mars and Earth.  Or any bodies with significant gravity and atmosphere. 

I rather think the novelty price of pieces of Mars here on Earth with be a transient that wears off and goes away,  and rather quickly,  once there are people on Mars permanently.  Until then,  there likely will be a market for rocks and dirt from Mars.  But that won't last. 

What we are talking about here is the temporary initial versus the long-term stable trade economy a colony must be based on.  Simple resource extraction ain't it,  either.  That didn't work very well here 300-500 years ago.  Those former colonies where the economic model was simply resource extraction are largely third-world countries today.  Those former colonies where a real two-way (or even three+ way) trade got started,  are largely prosperous nations today.

The "gotcha" was then (and still is now) that when you first go there,  you have no idea what commodities are going to be the basis of the trade economy.  That's because you don't know what's really there,  or what you can really do with it,  until you go,  stay a while,  and try lots of things out.  Simple (and as hard) as that.

It takes a while,  maybe a century,  to get all that settled.  At least it did here,  300-500 years ago.

GW


GW Johnson
McGregor,  Texas

"There is nothing as expensive as a dead crew,  especially one dead from a bad management decision"

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#14 2014-01-14 13:25:41

RobertDyck
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From: Winnipeg, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 6,489
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Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

There are several real things that can provide economic return. Metal asteroids can be mined for gold, silver, platinum, and platinum group metals. Mining will produce a lot of industrial metals as a by-product: iron, nickel, chrome, etc. That won't be economical to transport back to Earth, but an aeroshell made of nickel/chrome alloy called Inconel could transport precious metal bullion back to Earth. The parachute for Genesis failed, the aeroshell crashed. I consider that a successful demonstration of how to return asteroid metal to Earth: you don't need a parachute. Just drop it, and tell everyone to stay out of the way. Gold and silver are difficult to separate from each other, so just don't. Take the bars to a refinery on Earth, do it there. So if the bars get bent or dented on impact, it doesn't matter. They'll be melted down anyway.

Carbonaceous Chondrite asteroids have water ice. That water can be harvested by drilling just like oil. Hollow drill pipe, with an electric heating element at the drill heat. Once you drill into ice, melt it. Initially it wil sublimate, but at just 6.12 millibar pressure, liquid water will form. Steam and wet mud will be pushed up the drill pipe. Filter, then further with a reverse osmosis filter, then split with electrolysis. Hydrogen and oxygen: rocket fuel. Refrigeration pump to liquefy, all run by solar panels. The result is rocket fuel. Transport back to Earth orbit. Military spy satellites will buy fuel to extend their operation. The military is already starting experiments into refilling fuel tanks of their satellites.

Carbonaceous Chondrite asteroids close to the Sun will have boiled off their water long ago. It's estimated (guess-stimated) asteroids must be at Mars orbit or farther to still have ice. Don Quixote (asteroid 3552) has been confirmed to still have water ice, a lot of it. It's the only "Near Earth Object" confirmed so far to have water. Mars moons are captured Carbonaceous Chondrite asteroids, do they also have water? If so, a harvest mission could use Mars atmosphere for aerocapture. That could make Mars moons the easiest target to get fuel.

The first resource is Mars itself. There is no government on Mars, so someone who wants to establish a homestead can go there. No government, no regulation, no tax. But no health care, no shopping malls, no grocery stores. Some people will be attracted to this. Homestead in the "outback"; that's an Australian term, you can't call it "wilderness" since there will be no wildlife. Servicing homesteaders will be big business.

I've come up with a plan. The deal will then be: sell your house, sell your car, liquidate your retirement savings and life insurance, liquidate everything. This will buy you a ticket for just yourself, the clothes you wear, and some luggage. You also have to buy that luggage and whatever you want to put in it. Rich people could bring equipment for their homestead, but upper middle class settlers will arrive with only their clothes and luggage. The "corporation" would operate a ship from LEO to Mars orbit, and back. This will carry settlers. It will cost money to build, but operation and maintenance will be from space. The "corporation" will build a city on Mars, operating as "Ellis Island". This city will employ new arrivals, building replacement parts and equipment to maintain the ship. It will also grow food, and fuel will be supplied either from Mars, or one of it's Moons. Fuel for departure from Earth will be from that same orbital fuel depot, filled from an NEO or Martian moon. The idea is once settlement starts, all further costs will be from the Martian/space economy, no cost what so ever from Earth. But settlers pay in Earth currency. So once it begins, the corporation rakes in the money.

The corporate "city" will also provide equipment to build a homestead. Can you save enough money to buy your own homestead in the outback? This will be a company town, with company town prices for everything. Employees would get a free apartment with free utilities, a cafeteria with free meals, and healthcare as part of the compensation package. However, with all that free stuff, salary would be quite low. And if you want to eat a meal at home, you have to buy groceries. Restaurants would charge. Only company employees would be allowed in the company cafeteria, and it would only serve cafeteria food. Anyone not an employee of the company would have to rent an apartment, pay for utilities, buy their own healthcare service, pay for everything.

Instead of a dome, I see the "city" as a big building, something like a shopping mall. Stores could rent space in the building, just like renting space in the mall. If a business wants to build an apartment complex, they would lease a large space in the big pressurized building. Rent would include pressure, oxygen recycling, heat, and basic city services like garbage collection and police. The entrepreneur would then rent individual apartments to tenants.

I am reminded of the advertising slogan in the movie Blade Runner: "A new life awaits you in the Off-World colonies. A chance to begin again in a golden land of opportunity and adventure."

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#15 2014-01-14 15:43:54

Void
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Registered: 2011-12-29
Posts: 3,710

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Don't understand this too well.

Signals for any such TV rights would need to be scrambled to protect the feed that in itself might be breaking law for thoses that funded the expedition.
Sure the art surely will come but the returns wont be to those making it.

If it as it seems, there would be little incentive for people to create, invent.

The current culture of domination, which I consider to be the ghost of the slave culture that used to exist in this country, will not last. 

Otherwise you are talking share croppers, and all profits being spent by the idle rich.  Just not heroic.  Not going to inspire.  Not going to make it.

Not us.


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

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#16 2014-01-14 16:53:15

Terraformer
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From: Logres
Registered: 2007-08-27
Posts: 3,356
Website

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Actually, Robert, I agree with a lot of what you're saying. I imagine also that there would be companies which outfit arcological villages to sell to groups wishing to emigrate, with and without an ongoing servicing contract (dependent upon the skill level of the group). Included would be a machine shop, automated farm, medical facilities ranging from very basic (for one containing a single family) up to a fully equipped hospital (for the more city sized versions). If a group of pilgrims can raise the money, which could be on the order of $150-200k each all inclusive, they could emigrate and set up their own civilisation far away from the decadence of Old Terra.

I've been mainly thinking about it in the context of developing the Lunar economy, though. Going from a mining outpost to a research facility to a hotel to rented apartments to a city.


"I guarantee you that at some point, everything's going to go south on you, and you're going to say, 'This is it, this is how I end.' Now you can either accept that, or you can get to work." - Mark Watney

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#17 2014-01-14 18:09:23

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 6,308

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Decimator wrote:

I don't think there will be much commerce between Mars and Earth.  Naturally, there will be information products, but they aren't likely to be much different from what we have here.  The best sources of wealth are small bodies like Luna and NEOs.  Places with resources(propellant, fissionables, structural materials, etc), very low gravity, and no atmosphere.  I think we'll see a lot of commerce between small bodies and whatever places we colonize, but little between large bodies.

Depends on your definition of "much".   

I think a policy of 100% ISRU on Mars, whilst technically feasible is unlikely ever to make sense as a proficient use of resources (most particularly labour resources). 

Let's assume you could eventually get to a community of 100,000 on Mars, scattered over several settlements.  On earth in a developed economy that sort of population in an advanced economy might utilise about 50,000-100,000 tonnes pa of material of all sorts (including food).

I would expect Mars to be a much frugal and resource-savvy community. I think you could probably reduce that by 90% - so perhaps the community will use between 5,000 to 10,000 tonnes of material per annum.  If they rely on Earth for say 15% of that, we might be talking of inward trade of 750-1500 tonnes per annum.

I think once the Mars community is established there will be a good trade in meteorites, regolith, jewelery, luxury agricultural goods, luxury textiles, art objects (pots, vases, mugs and so on should be very popular), returned science equipement and so on.

Plenty of people of course will be going each way (I excluded them from the tonnages). I would expect something like 1000 in and out at least for a community of 100,000.  Each of them will be a carrying a bag full of souvenirs back to Earth.


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

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#18 2014-01-14 18:16:20

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 6,308

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

RobertDyck wrote:

There are several real things that can provide economic return. Metal asteroids can be mined for gold, silver, platinum, and platinum group metals. Mining will produce a lot of industrial metals as a by-product: iron, nickel, chrome, etc. That won't be economical to transport back to Earth, but an aeroshell made of nickel/chrome alloy called Inconel could transport precious metal bullion back to Earth. The parachute for Genesis failed, the aeroshell crashed. I consider that a successful demonstration of how to return asteroid metal to Earth: you don't need a parachute. Just drop it, and tell everyone to stay out of the way. Gold and silver are difficult to separate from each other, so just don't. Take the bars to a refinery on Earth, do it there. So if the bars get bent or dented on impact, it doesn't matter. They'll be melted down anyway.

Carbonaceous Chondrite asteroids have water ice. That water can be harvested by drilling just like oil. Hollow drill pipe, with an electric heating element at the drill heat. Once you drill into ice, melt it. Initially it wil sublimate, but at just 6.12 millibar pressure, liquid water will form. Steam and wet mud will be pushed up the drill pipe. Filter, then further with a reverse osmosis filter, then split with electrolysis. Hydrogen and oxygen: rocket fuel. Refrigeration pump to liquefy, all run by solar panels. The result is rocket fuel. Transport back to Earth orbit. Military spy satellites will buy fuel to extend their operation. The military is already starting experiments into refilling fuel tanks of their satellites.

Carbonaceous Chondrite asteroids close to the Sun will have boiled off their water long ago. It's estimated (guess-stimated) asteroids must be at Mars orbit or farther to still have ice. Don Quixote (asteroid 3552) has been confirmed to still have water ice, a lot of it. It's the only "Near Earth Object" confirmed so far to have water. Mars moons are captured Carbonaceous Chondrite asteroids, do they also have water? If so, a harvest mission could use Mars atmosphere for aerocapture. That could make Mars moons the easiest target to get fuel.

The first resource is Mars itself. There is no government on Mars, so someone who wants to establish a homestead can go there. No government, no regulation, no tax. But no health care, no shopping malls, no grocery stores. Some people will be attracted to this. Homestead in the "outback"; that's an Australian term, you can't call it "wilderness" since there will be no wildlife. Servicing homesteaders will be big business.

I've come up with a plan. The deal will then be: sell your house, sell your car, liquidate your retirement savings and life insurance, liquidate everything. This will buy you a ticket for just yourself, the clothes you wear, and some luggage. You also have to buy that luggage and whatever you want to put in it. Rich people could bring equipment for their homestead, but upper middle class settlers will arrive with only their clothes and luggage. The "corporation" would operate a ship from LEO to Mars orbit, and back. This will carry settlers. It will cost money to build, but operation and maintenance will be from space. The "corporation" will build a city on Mars, operating as "Ellis Island". This city will employ new arrivals, building replacement parts and equipment to maintain the ship. It will also grow food, and fuel will be supplied either from Mars, or one of it's Moons. Fuel for departure from Earth will be from that same orbital fuel depot, filled from an NEO or Martian moon. The idea is once settlement starts, all further costs will be from the Martian/space economy, no cost what so ever from Earth. But settlers pay in Earth currency. So once it begins, the corporation rakes in the money.

The corporate "city" will also provide equipment to build a homestead. Can you save enough money to buy your own homestead in the outback? This will be a company town, with company town prices for everything. Employees would get a free apartment with free utilities, a cafeteria with free meals, and healthcare as part of the compensation package. However, with all that free stuff, salary would be quite low. And if you want to eat a meal at home, you have to buy groceries. Restaurants would charge. Only company employees would be allowed in the company cafeteria, and it would only serve cafeteria food. Anyone not an employee of the company would have to rent an apartment, pay for utilities, buy their own healthcare service, pay for everything.

Instead of a dome, I see the "city" as a big building, something like a shopping mall. Stores could rent space in the building, just like renting space in the mall. If a business wants to build an apartment complex, they would lease a large space in the big pressurized building. Rent would include pressure, oxygen recycling, heat, and basic city services like garbage collection and police. The entrepreneur would then rent individual apartments to tenants.

I am reminded of the advertising slogan in the movie Blade Runner: "A new life awaits you in the Off-World colonies. A chance to begin again in a golden land of opportunity and adventure."


I agree about life support systems maintenance being big business on Mars.

If - as I believe very likely - there will be strong competition from universities to set up the first "campus" on Mars (in reality a small research base to begin with), someone will have to provide all the life support systems servicing.

Perhaps an  Earth based company will ship out 50 people to install the campus and after that provide a 20 strong team of life support systems maintenance for the campus which might house 100 researchers and students. The researchers and students would in turn be sponsored by big companies like BP, Toyota, and so on, who want to associate  themselves with the cutting edge of advanced technology.

I think a lot of the money will change hands on Earth, but that doesn't preclude the possibility that an intra-Mars money economy will develop.


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

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#19 2014-01-14 19:45:45

RobertDyck
Moderator
From: Winnipeg, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 6,489
Website

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Think of it in terms of those making the investment. They put up tens of billions of dollars, in something that's considered very risky. How many settlers would it take before they get their money back? What is return on investment? Will they triple their money? Quadruple? More? The higher the risk, the higher the pay-off has to be. Otherwise they won't invest. So when talking to corporate executive, you have to "spin" it to emphasize all the profits they can make. And if you want to sustain it, then those profits have to be real.

Of couse also notice the individual settler is the primary source of their revenue. So they would be highly motivated to ensure individual settlers are successful. If someone starts a little shop in the main corridor of the mall, selling widgets at a lower price than the company store, then good! Let him. A modern economy requires so many tools, gadgets and widgets that it'll be a very long time before the market is saturated. So if Joe Blow can manufacture spacesuit helmets better and cheaper than the corporation, then great! The corporation will just start manufacturing something else. Say rovers, or equipment to mine hematite concretions, or something else. In fact, if Joe Blow has a successful small business manufacturing and directly selling his widget, then expect the corporation will use him for advertising on Earth.
blimp-bladerunner.jpg

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#20 2014-01-15 06:47:02

Void
Member
Registered: 2011-12-29
Posts: 3,710

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

I would think that an eliment to consider which I don't think has been mentioned yet would be a local government entity.

Such an entity could issue bonds.  Collect property taxes, and very likely collect income taxes.

By selling bonds, large and small entities could invest, speculating that they would have a probability to get a return.

Perhaps it could be as much as 5% of a common persons retirement portfolio.

Companies set up on Mars could even consider stocks.

Companies based on Earth having holdings on Mars or busness in transfering goods and services between the two worlds would also likely have stocks.

SpaceX for instance if they bought some bonds from the Mars entity, would have every reason to want to make maneuvers that were more likely to prosper the settlement.

I understand that there are some issues about ownership of an outerspace property, but then there would be incentive for the international community to make a limited land grant to that government, with stipulations on usage and distribution.  Selling land then would also be a source of revenue for a governing entitity issuing bonds.

Of course there would be corporations international and eventually interplanetary, and they would have perhaps holdings within and under some circumstances outside of such a land grant area.

Then there would be research facilities which I would expect would have special dominion over their assets.


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

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#21 2014-01-15 07:29:24

Terraformer
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From: Logres
Registered: 2007-08-27
Posts: 3,356
Website

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Urrggh. Seriously? You want to give Mars to a state...? As in, a land grab so that they can bully anyone who wants to use the resources?


"I guarantee you that at some point, everything's going to go south on you, and you're going to say, 'This is it, this is how I end.' Now you can either accept that, or you can get to work." - Mark Watney

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#22 2014-01-15 09:15:07

Void
Member
Registered: 2011-12-29
Posts: 3,710

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Yes, people have to be incentivized, if they are going to make their average action a contribution to the common wealth.

Reality is humans have phycological behaviors that arn't going to go away.  Experience has shown how to prompt humans to work together to do materially favorable things.

The American west and I am afraid European expansion into a Vacuum show how it is done.  (I don't settle for the notion that the so called colonial era was due to a lack of morality, it was due to the fact that areas affected required a cultural updating.  However every effort should be made to counterbalance the profit motive with moral prohibitions which would suppress the bad behaviors that were exhibited during the so called colonial era.  There would be no excuse not to.  Back then there was no authority to stop the colonizers from behaving in in immoral fashion.  In fact many of our present so called morals evolved after the fact).

SpaceX operates on capitalism with fostering from the state, and I can't imagine any other formula that would get the job done.

Last edited by Void (2014-01-15 10:09:42)


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

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#23 2014-01-15 10:18:29

RobertDyck
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From: Winnipeg, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 6,489
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Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

According to King Rob the First, King of Mars! I shall own the corporation that runs all the stuff I previously mentioned. I shall also be King. There shall be only two levels of government: federal and municipal. Federal shall have jurisdiction over the entire planet, orbital space, and both moons. Everything. Municipal shall have jurisdiction over only one town. There shall not be any other level of government: no provinces, states, counties, or other. Federal law shall be really simple: thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not steel, other than that you're pretty much on your own. Of course details: assault and battery will also be illegal, as will embezzlement, extortion, etc. But literally nothing else. No laws restricting who you can marry, or how many wives/husbands. If a 50 year old man wants to marry a 16 year old girl, as long as everyone is consenting, go for it. No laws regarding drugs. If you want to smoke pot, go for it. If you want to do hard drugs like Crystal Meth, that's really really stupid, but you won't harm anyone but yourself. If you want to drive your rover while drunk, so be it. Of course if you crash into a dune and smash your rover, there won't be any auto club to rescue you, and there won't be any insurance; you have to fix it yourself. There shall be no tax of any sort what so ever. None. Zilch! Nothing. No import tax, not sales tax, no income tax, no property tax.

If you want to build something within the capital city, there will be land lease. But as I said, that would probably be a large building rather than a dome, anyway. The land lease would pay for pressure, oxygen recycling, heat, and basic city services such as garbage collection and police. But the land lease would only apply to the capital city, what other towns or cities do is up to them. The federal government would not charge any taxes what so ever. However, since the corporation is the federal government, the corporation shall pay for the federal government. Not that there will be much of a federal government, anyway. Towns or corporations or individuals would be prohibited from having a military, only the federal government would be allowed a military. That should prevent war. Municipalities (towns, cities, etc.) can have a local police force, but they have to pay for it themselves, and their jurisdiction is strictly limited to municipal limits. And municipal police are prohibited possessing weapons of war. (No loopholes.) That will be enforced by federal police. The city police of the capital city would double as federal police for a very long time. Only federal laws could be enforced outside the capital city, municipal rules would only apply within city limits. No driving while intoxicated inside the capital city, after all we don't want you smashing into something. But outside, beyond city limits, well away from the dome or pressurized building, go for it.

By the way, my great grandmother on my mother's side immigrated to Canada at age 14. Specifically for the purpose of being a bride. These girls were assigned to a host family until they found a husband. My great grandmother found a man and married in about a year, I haven't been told if her 15th birthday was before the wedding. She had no idea what to do on her wedding night, the host family had to explain "the birds and the bees". That was just the late 1800s. My, how society has changed. Cultural values are not absolute.

So decrees King Me! All hail King Me!

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#24 2014-01-15 11:13:28

Void
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Registered: 2011-12-29
Posts: 3,710

Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

OK, it gives the roundheads something to do. smile


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

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#25 2014-01-15 11:24:24

Terraformer
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From: Logres
Registered: 2007-08-27
Posts: 3,356
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Re: Economic return of a manned exploration of Mars

Eh. As Princeps of Ceres, I mark you, King Rob, as my equal, not my superior.

I think there has to be some sort of minimalist court system involved in space colonies, but it ought to be an ultraminimalist one. Fortunately, the question of original acquisition and the Lockean proviso can be by and large left, since (a) all habitable land has to be built by people, so they own in the same way they would own anything they make with their labour, and (b) there are so many resources available that claiming an entire comet for yourself and building a torus or Bernal sphere won't deprive anyone of the opportunity to make their own.

If people want to make their own laws in their own colonies, they are free to do so - however, I would not permit them to keep anyone prisoner. If someone breaks their law, they may exile them. I'd be surprised if they couldn't find somewhere that would take them, unless they've done something particularly heinous, in which case they can probably stay for free at a Cererean Industries Automated Prison Facility, operated by the Solar Justice League.

I don't like you're ideas about the military though. That implies that you're going to have gun control as well, and restrictions on the sort of vehicles people can own (but see Kzinti lesson). If people want to form a militia, they should be free to do so. Standing armies are a bad idea.


"I guarantee you that at some point, everything's going to go south on you, and you're going to say, 'This is it, this is how I end.' Now you can either accept that, or you can get to work." - Mark Watney

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