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Monday, February 7, 2005

NASA and Terraforming

NASA has released a new study detailing how perfluorocarbons could be used to terraform Mars. Using PFCs, of which octafluoropropane seemed to be the most effective, NASA's computer model found that only 300 ppm could start a run-away greenhouse effect. Dr. Margarita Marinova and others at NASA Ames Research Center found that the idea was "completely practical." Dr. Marinova published his findings in the Journal of Geophysical Research - Planets. "Bringing life to Mars and studying its growth would contribute to our understanding of evolution, and the ability of life to adapt and proliferate on other worlds... Since warming Mars effectively reverts it to its past, more habitable state, this would give any possible dormant life on Mars the chance to be revived and develop further." The gasses would have to be made on Mars and preferably during manned missions. The simulations found that it would take centuries for the entire terraforming process to be completed, although not all possible factors that could speed up the process were included in the study.

(More info: Scotsman, Guardian)

- posted by Jim @ 16:00 EST