Mars One Finalist: It's All a Scam

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freaper:

Blazing Hero:
Of course it was a scam. I just wish NASA would get some more funding to make an actual attempt to go to Mars. It pisses me off that there is so little drive in government to explore space.

Because, unfortunately, exploration is a form of luxury, a risk often too big to take for all but the wealthiest of nations/organizations/individuals. If a Mars mission was to solve an immediate "earthly" problem we have, you can bet your ass NASA would get the funding.

Hell, just convince the US Government that Edward Snowden is hiding on Mars and there'd be a rocket launching for there by the beginning of next year.

In any case...is anyone at all surprised that this is probably a scam? Six billion is a drop in the ocean for something like this and the whole reality TV thing just seemed bizarre. As did the canvassing for members of the general public to be the crew.

008Zulu:
Europa has water and oxygen, probably not near survivable levels, but it's a better objective to aim for.

Hmm? Mars has water. Not as much, but enough. (Neither have significant accessible oxygen, but you can make it from water and recycle it from CO2 with plants.) It also has accessible mineral wealth, which Europa lacks, meaning you can relatively easily build stuff on Mars with local materials and on Europa you cannot build anything but igloos.

Europa is also much farther - like over ten times farther in their respective closest approaches. Then there's the extreme radiation belts it bathes in. Simply surviving the journey is a much more difficult proposition.

Don't get me wrong, Mars would be very difficult, but Europa manages to be substantially worse.

Wait wait wait, are you saying picking dozens of 50 year-olds for a mission slated ten years from now, for a one-way trip to found a colony on Mars may may have been blowing smoke up everyone ass?!

I mean for fucks sake! From what I remember, there were only a handful of teens on the list. Meaning you're only going to get a handful of 20 somethings on the colony. And it was mostly 30 and 40 year-olds, meaning the average age will be between 40-50 years old. Meaning it'll be an aging population with little to no kids that dies off within a decade or two of landing.

There was no way that we could send people to live on Mars when the most we've done so far is land a handful of people on the moon. At worst, the organizers would end up having to report back to the public that several "lucky volunteers" have become the first people to die on Mars, and any future plans would be delayed exponentially. Even assuming that everything goes as planned and all the astronauts arrive safely, they would most likely suffer mental breakdowns from the sheer boredom of being stranded on the equivalent of a big, empty desert, the lack of sunlight exposure, and isolation from society. What happens when critical equipment fails and needs to be replaced with parts from Earth? A colony on Mars would be the collaboration of every space agency in the world and several dozens of billions of dollars of funding, not a 6 billion dollar private venture.

Silentpony:
Wait wait wait, are you saying picking dozens of 50 year-olds for a mission slated ten years from now, for a one-way trip to found a colony on Mars may may have been blowing smoke up everyone ass?!

I mean for fucks sake! From what I remember, there were only a handful of teens on the list. Meaning you're only going to get a handful of 20 somethings on the colony. And it was mostly 30 and 40 year-olds, meaning the average age will be between 40-50 years old. Meaning it'll be an aging population with little to no kids that dies off within a decade or two of landing.

I'm pretty sure the point wasn't to actually colonise it in terms of "breeding population". It was just to get people there to live there until they die.

"When you join the 'Mars One Community,' which happens automatically if you applied as a candidate, they start giving you points," Roche explained to medium in an email. "You get points for getting through each round of the selection process (but just an arbitrary number of points, not anything to do with ranking), and then the only way to get more points is to buy merchandise from Mars One or to donate money to them."

Well, it's good to see that the business model of freemium gaming has made its way into "real-world" scams.

Lightspeaker:

Silentpony:
SNIP

I'm pretty sure the point wasn't to actually colonize it in terms of "breeding population". It was just to get people there to live there until they die.

A lot of work and money just to ship 100 corpses to Mars though, don't ya' think? I mean they'd be better off just creating a Mars themed amusement park. That way people would actually pay attention.

Mars One finalist Dr. Joseph Roche claims the entire operation is just one big scam that will inevitably fall on its face.

In other news, dog bites man, sky is blue and the escapist's still lacking interesting content.

I hope there's some way to publicly punish or humiliate these scammers because regular people really will lose their faith in legit space programs if they keep getting these assholes announcing bullshit

I wouldn't worry about people losing faith in science. Americans already don't believe in science and everyone else was smart enough to already know this was a scam.

The fact that all of the contestants took this ridiculous proposition seriously and obviously had no idea about space flight and what it actually takes to land humans on the planet Mars, should have instantly disqualified them.

Actually, I am surprised that it's a scam (in theory). I actually just thought it was a half thought out plan which wouldn't even get off the ground. Then I totally lost interest in the whole non-event.
Now I'm actually interested again to see the scam's progress.

So it's a total waste of time and money? Who knew...

In other news: grass grows, sun shines, birds sing and Sailor Jupiter is the best Sailor Scout. :D

OT: I knew this was just going to be a waste, I can't even begin to think of all the things that could go wrong on a mission like this, like the crew going nuts from lack of outside stimulation or critical machines breaking down and running out of spare parts.

Pyrian:
Mars has water. Not as much, but enough. (Neither have significant accessible oxygen, but you can make it from water and recycle it from CO2 with plants.) It also has accessible mineral wealth, which Europa lacks, meaning you can relatively easily build stuff on Mars with local materials and on Europa you cannot build anything but igloos.

Europa is also much farther - like over ten times farther in their respective closest approaches. Then there's the extreme radiation belts it bathes in. Simply surviving the journey is a much more difficult proposition.

Don't get me wrong, Mars would be very difficult, but Europa manages to be substantially worse.

The cost of setting up manufacturing facilities on Mars is a long term investment that isn't exactly profitable. Neither are particularly ideal for colony world candidates, but Europa's abundant water supply makes it a better option for a staging ground.

freaper:

Blazing Hero:
Of course it was a scam. I just wish NASA would get some more funding to make an actual attempt to go to Mars. It pisses me off that there is so little drive in government to explore space.

Because, unfortunately, exploration is a form of luxury, a risk often too big to take for all but the wealthiest of nations/organizations/individuals. If a Mars mission was to solve an immediate "earthly" problem we have, you can bet your ass NASA would get the funding.

Space exploration has done a lot already to solve a large number of problems on Earth and catapult us forward tremendously technologically. The problem is most people are either ignorant of this or lack the foresight to understand why space exploration continues to be more important than ever.

Hell, just overcoming the challenge of getting to Mars could solve issues such as how to feed people in the poorest parts of the world. Setting up a permanent colony and eventually terraforming could help tremendously with spreading the population levels we have out into the solar system and providing a wealth of resources for the human race to utilize. And if we can catapult ourselves from there out into the rest of the galaxy and maybe even the rest of the Universe, we've all but ensured human survival for as long as the Universe exists. I can't think of anything more important for the human race to do quite frankly.

Roche's biggest fear is that when Mars One inevitably fails, it may shake people's faith in the scientific community.

That's not going to shake people's faith in the scientific community.
Though that might cast some doubts on private initiatives when it comes to heavy-lifting in space exploration and conquest. At least the untried and untested parts. Were I Elon Musk, I'd be pissed off at these crooks, because this might damage projects that are a bit more than a mere pipe-dream.

What I'd also like is people losing faith in the few media that were asinine enough to give publicity to such an obvious joke. No self-respecting newspaper or TV News should've mentioned this seriously, if at all.

Lightspeaker:
I'm pretty sure the point wasn't to actually colonise it in terms of "breeding population". It was just to get people there to live there until they die.

Which would've happened way faster than promised or expected.

Honestly, never heard of it before this.

008Zulu:

Pyrian:
Mars has water. Not as much, but enough. (Neither have significant accessible oxygen, but you can make it from water and recycle it from CO2 with plants.) It also has accessible mineral wealth, which Europa lacks, meaning you can relatively easily build stuff on Mars with local materials and on Europa you cannot build anything but igloos.

Europa is also much farther - like over ten times farther in their respective closest approaches. Then there's the extreme radiation belts it bathes in. Simply surviving the journey is a much more difficult proposition.

Don't get me wrong, Mars would be very difficult, but Europa manages to be substantially worse.

The cost of setting up manufacturing facilities on Mars is a long term investment that isn't exactly profitable.

Not sure where the idea of "profitable" ever entered the picture. Still an enormous improvement over Europa. Europa has one raw material - and a remarkably common one, at that. Seriously, anything you'd want to do on Europa, you'd almost certainly be better off just using a comet. Jupiter is pretty, but it sucks.

Anyway, as the scale of operations increase, the efficiency of manufacturing on-site quickly outpaces the efficiency of shipping everything in. If you're doing anything - anything - on the scale of colonization, on-site industry is essential. Interplanetary shipping costs are just too high.

008Zulu:
Neither are particularly ideal for colony world candidates, but Europa's abundant water supply makes it a better option for a staging ground.

That's such nonsense that I'm not even sure what you're talking about. Mars has more than enough water for virtually any conceivable purpose short of terraforming. Europa does have a great deal more - but what exactly are you planning on staging that needs absurd quantities of water and nothing else?

MonsterCrit:

wulfy42:
Is it possible? Sure, but there are a TON of steps that would need to be taken first WAY before you could actually send anyone to mars. Your probably WAY better off setting up a station on the moon with mining equipment to help you build a bigger ship with more supplies (While you keep sending additional O2, extra soil and other supplies up to a space station to be stored) , then you would be using all the resources needed to get everything out of Earth's atmosphere.

In addition, setting up a sample "biodome" on the moon would give you practice and ensure you have what you need once you actually send a crew to mars (believe it takes about 2 years to get there). I don't think we have currently had any humans spend 2 years in space without coming back, nor have we even had humans live 2 years in a biodome without any outside resources being introduced. These are things that need to happen before you can send any manned ship to mars, and it's not something that can happen over night.

Best bet, in my opinion, work directly on getting comercial continuous flights up to a space station and back again (paid for largely by the passengers who are taking the trips), this would allow you to bring supplies up and constantly increase the size of the station (and more then likely build the actual ship in space that way). You could then, in theory, skip the whole moon phase (though long term it makes MUCH more sense to make a moon base first so you can send additional ships towards mars after the first.

Btw, doesn't have to be one way. Just because NOW we don't have a way to get them back, does not meen we wouldn't have one in say 10 years. We just need to make sure we have enough supplies/materials etc for the people who go to survive long enough for us to come up with a way to get them back.

If we where to figure out cold fusion for instance, say in 10 years, it would not be nearly as hard to make a ship that could make a round trip to mars.

I've often said. before they can build a base on the moon, they need to build a self-sustaining colony on the ocean floor. At least a thousand feet down. Yeah I know space and the ocean are two fairly different environments but the methods and problems are comprable. You have to creat a sealed, air tight, pressurized enclosure capoable of withstanding a variety of stresses. Find a way to generate, store and recycle oxygen water and food for the long term, and keep people from going batshit insane for the same period.

It'll be cheaper, easier and less harmful than trying to develop the techniques in space.. for starters there's a whole slew of problems caused be low-micro gravity. Weakening of the bones, heart, muscles and blood vessels for starters.. Then there's the bacteria. Yeah apparently in low gravity, Virii fungi and bacteria basically go super saiyan.. while the human immune system conversely gets a little weaker.

Yeah, there are a ton of steps, I'd say making a sustained biodome on land first, before doing it underwater even....but you could short cut some of the steps to try and get it done in a shorter time frame. It's something the whole world needs to be working on, and should have already for decades, not just individuals, companies, or even countries.

Is Mars One probably a scam? Almost certainly yes. Are there issues with the conclusions of the article? Also yes. Firstly, unless he spent a metric fuckton of money to get dossiers on those in the "program" and then the amount of points they were awarded at various stages, he has zero way of deciding arbitrariness. Secondly, any "donation" funding would almost certainly be in the program even ifit was real because as of yet they have no source of funding so anything that brings down the grand total would be a good thing. So any selection process would first pick the "essential slots" and then distribute marginal slots based solely on points.

Yeah, I vaguely remember this and always thought it was actually run and/or encouraged by Musk, but then recently realized that they're not affiliated at all beyond their claims to use SpaceX spacecraft, but have never actually contacted them. I think I only made the connection because the company also plans to develop Mars-related shtuff, pretty bad on my part. The red flags pop up the second you look up aaaanything to do with this program.

I'll contently wait for SpaceX to keep developing. Maybe they won't reach Mars, but there's tangible progress at least.

MonsterCrit:
I've often said. before they can build a base on the moon, they need to build a self-sustaining colony on the ocean floor. At least a thousand feet down. Yeah I know space and the ocean are two fairly different environments but the methods and problems are comprable. You have to creat a sealed, air tight, pressurized enclosure capoable of withstanding a variety of stresses. Find a way to generate, store and recycle oxygen water and food for the long term, and keep people from going batshit insane for the same period.

It'll be cheaper, easier and less harmful than trying to develop the techniques in space.. for starters there's a whole slew of problems caused be low-micro gravity. Weakening of the bones, heart, muscles and blood vessels for starters.. Then there's the bacteria. Yeah apparently in low gravity, Virii fungi and bacteria basically go super saiyan.. while the human immune system conversely gets a little weaker.

Actually you're very much off on your estimations and assumptions here.

The bottom of the sea is a far more hostile environment than space is. The great pressure under the sea makes it a significantly harder engineering challenge to build a liveable environment down there. Space is -14.7 psi pressure compared to Earth sea level. Pressure on Mars is slightly above that. Five miles under the sea is 11,800 psi pressure.

It almost can't be done. And even if it could it'd likely be exponentially more expensive and unbelievably dangerous (because you flat out could not have any flaws in design at all or the entire thing would instantly implode).

Sources in case you want to read a bit more:
http://www.forbes.com/sites/quora/2013/01/31/why-dont-we-spend-more-on-exploring-the-oceans-rather-than-on-space-exploration/
http://www.quora.com/Given-the-actual-space-station-ISS-would-it-be-cheaper-to-build-the-equivalent-at-3-4-5-miles-deep-underwater-Why

Pyrian:
Not sure where the idea of "profitable" ever entered the picture. Still an enormous improvement over Europa. Europa has one raw material - and a remarkably common one, at that. Seriously, anything you'd want to do on Europa, you'd almost certainly be better off just using a comet. Jupiter is pretty, but it sucks.

Someone has to pay the bill for all those trips. It's why the Moon program was shut down, there's nothing there to justify the expense.

Pyrian:
Anyway, as the scale of operations increase, the efficiency of manufacturing on-site quickly outpaces the efficiency of shipping everything in. If you're doing anything - anything - on the scale of colonization, on-site industry is essential. Interplanetary shipping costs are just too high.

All the impact sites would suggest mineral reserves, but they don't yet know the quality or quantity. This whole Mars One project is assuming that there is sufficient minerals. It's going to be a long time before we know for certain.

Pyrian:

008Zulu:
Neither are particularly ideal for colony world candidates, but Europa's abundant water supply makes it a better option for a staging ground.

That's such nonsense that I'm not even sure what you're talking about. Mars has more than enough water for virtually any conceivable purpose short of terraforming. Europa does have a great deal more - but what exactly are you planning on staging that needs absurd quantities of water and nothing else?

Trips further out in to the galaxy. Setting up a colony on Mars is like moving to the house right next to the one you are in. You want a new neighborhood, you have to setup in a new solar system.

Dammit.

I always wanted to write a screenplay about this exact same thing... oh well.

This just reads like the kind of thing that people go to Jail for once the dust settles and federal charges are considered.

...and conversely, would be sent to jail for LIFE if they actually succeeded at delivering what they're promising

Lightspeaker:

MonsterCrit:
I've often said. before they can build a base on the moon, they need to build a self-sustaining colony on the ocean floor. At least a thousand feet down. Yeah I know space and the ocean are two fairly different environments but the methods and problems are comprable. You have to creat a sealed, air tight, pressurized enclosure capoable of withstanding a variety of stresses. Find a way to generate, store and recycle oxygen water and food for the long term, and keep people from going batshit insane for the same period.

It'll be cheaper, easier and less harmful than trying to develop the techniques in space.. for starters there's a whole slew of problems caused be low-micro gravity. Weakening of the bones, heart, muscles and blood vessels for starters.. Then there's the bacteria. Yeah apparently in low gravity, Virii fungi and bacteria basically go super saiyan.. while the human immune system conversely gets a little weaker.

Actually you're very much off on your estimations and assumptions here.

The bottom of the sea is a far more hostile environment than space is. The great pressure under the sea makes it a significantly harder engineering challenge to build a liveable environment down there. Space is -14.7 psi pressure compared to Earth sea level. Pressure on Mars is slightly above that. Five miles under the sea is 11,800 psi pressure.

It almost can't be done. And even if it could it'd likely be exponentially more expensive and unbelievably dangerous (because you flat out could not have any flaws in design at all or the entire thing would instantly implode).

Sources in case you want to read a bit more:
http://www.forbes.com/sites/quora/2013/01/31/why-dont-we-spend-more-on-exploring-the-oceans-rather-than-on-space-exploration/
http://www.quora.com/Given-the-actual-space-station-ISS-would-it-be-cheaper-to-build-the-equivalent-at-3-4-5-miles-deep-underwater-Why

I said comprable and more cost effective. Not easier. The conditions are more hostile in some ways, You do not have to worry about radiation shielding under the sea. But that's a good thing. 'Pair and a Spare' as engineers say. For critical system find out what the greatest stress level will be then build to exceed that by 50%. The reason it'd be easier in some ways and cheaper... getting materials to the site will be exponentially cheaper. Not to mention if something goes wrong during testing it'll be much easier to rescue and recover.

The short is.. if you can build a dome a thousand feet down in the ocean and have it self sustainable.. moon or mars should be relatively easy.

Well I genuinely believed someone was putting together a plan, as in they are getting engineers and funding to work shit out, there is no lack of plausibility in that. In case people aren't aware there is non-stop research been going on surrounding this subject, entire sealed ecosystems built to test colonization theories. I didn't think this shit will just be done over night, that would be moronic to conceive.

But it looks like there isn't anything going on then, and if this guy hadn't come forth shit really would blow out big years from now.

Ahhh... Too good to be true, indeed. It's incredibly depressing how many trillions go towards military and feeding the arms industry, while space exploration gets crumbs in comparison. What else to expect then, other than humanity destroying itself before reaching the stars?

Saltyk:

Yeah, basically, its not likely until we make some huge leaps in technology. Artificial gravity is pretty much necessary and some sort of faster space travel would be nice.

Only if you look at it from the getting us there as-is perspective. Bio tech research will make it feasible for the human race to modify itself to work in low-g, high radiation environments before engineering will make it viable to send a modern human on any kind of extended journey.

Not that I don't think Humanity technologically incapable of succeeding on any kind of trip at the moment, I just think approaching the problem from a purely engineering angle is what's liable to keep costs incredibly high.

Grape_Bullion:
If anyone born before the year 2050 sincerely thought they were going to see humans on Mars in their lifetime, they deserve a smack in the mouth for being so dumb.

It's not coming soon, but those numbers and that level of certainty sound way off. I mean, the extreme is 2049 + 80 years = 2129, and that's further into the future than the Wright Brothers' first flight was in the past. I don't think you can predict anything with "if you disagree you're stupid" levels of certainty about things that far in the future, considering how much has changed in the last 100+ years, even if you dismiss the idea that change is accelerating.

MonsterCrit:
I've often said. before they can build a base on the moon, they need to build a self-sustaining colony on the ocean floor. At least a thousand feet down. Yeah I know space and the ocean are two fairly different environments but the methods and problems are comprable. You have to creat a sealed, air tight, pressurized enclosure capoable of withstanding a variety of stresses. Find a way to generate, store and recycle oxygen water and food for the long term, and keep people from going batshit insane for the same period.

It'll be cheaper, easier and less harmful than trying to develop the techniques in space.. for starters there's a whole slew of problems caused be low-micro gravity. Weakening of the bones, heart, muscles and blood vessels for starters.. Then there's the bacteria. Yeah apparently in low gravity, Virii fungi and bacteria basically go super saiyan.. while the human immune system conversely gets a little weaker.

Moon base is less of a challenge than deep sea base, for a number of reasons. Most of which have to do with extreme pressure. A thousand feet down is 31 atmospheres of pressure. If you have the living quarters at surface pressure, to avoid physiological problems for the inhabitants, then the structure needs to be extremely structurally reinforced to not collapse in on itself, see: crush depth. If you have the indoor enviroment at ambient pressure, the people will have to be breathing some very exotic gas mixture, probably a mainly hydrogen based gas mix with less than 1% oxygen(hydrox, like something from COMEX's Hydra 10 experiment), the decompression time to go back to the surface would be measured in weeks or months.

By contrast, a facility on the moon or mars just has to have enough structural strength to withstand having a single atmosphere of pressure on the inside, and less on the outside. This is far less of an engineering feat.

But yes, the main problem for human habitation in lunar/mars/space enviroments are those caused by low gravity. Though Mars wouldn't be nearly as bad as space or moon, since at least it has 0.38G gravity, vs 0.165G for the moon.

Piorn:
ooooh , so once again an organization promises salvation for monetary compensation, and it turns out it's all just a big fraud.
Where's Martin Luther when you need him?

I don't think Mr. "Reason is a whore, the greatest enemy faith has" is going to be of any help in scientific endeavors.

Rowan93:

Grape_Bullion:
snip

It's not coming soon, but those numbers and that level of certainty sound way off. I mean, the extreme is 2049 + 80 years = 2129, and that's further into the future than the Wright Brothers' first flight was in the past. I don't think you can predict anything with "if you disagree you're stupid" levels of certainty about things that far in the future, considering how much has changed in the last 100+ years, even if you dismiss the idea that change is accelerating.

I'd be a little less cynical if you know... going places not called "Earth" were a priority for nations. We're hardly capable of putting humans into orbit at this point. Mars is a pipe dream.

We can barely get little robots there. Robots that don't breathe, eat, drink, or poop in vast quantities. Anyone old enough to read this who thinks a manned Mars mission will happen in their lifetime is a fool, and I can't be the least bit sorry if they donated to such an obvious scam.

008Zulu:
Europa has water and oxygen, probably not near survivable levels, but it's a better objective to aim for.

Better objective? Europa is insanely far compared to Mars, and we haven't done any in-depth exploration of it.

What we should be doing is trying to set up something on the moon, then use it as a jump off point to Mars. Sure Mars is a desolate rock, so are most other bodies in the universe. The point is that we would have done something no other human being would have thought possible. Humanity would no longer be confined to one planet, our chance as a species wouldn't hinge on one moment of bad luck.

Would the resources be costly? Oh yeah. The profit loss would be impossible to make up, at least for decades (unless we found some sort of Hollywood mineral worth billions). But accomplishing even a survivable habitat on the moon would be one of the greatest feats in human history, and something we should be striving towards.

MonsterCrit:
The short is.. if you can build a dome a thousand feet down in the ocean and have it self sustainable.. moon or mars should be relatively easy.

Setting aside whether the seafloor is a useful analogue... We haven't even really managed that feat on the surface. The Biosphere experiments were, AFAIK, the closest we've come. You don't have to go anywhere to confront the challenges of a sealed sustainable environment. You can build it in your backyard, and if it works, you've significantly advanced our potential space colonization capabilities.

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