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CONTEST: Mission: Deep Red

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posted on May, 18 2006 @ 01:05 PM
To send a team of astronauts to Mars to perform missions, and then retrieve the team and send the astronauts back to Earth.

Ship Design and Construction:
Deep Red’s designs are focused into 4 major sections; Red Sector, Yellow Sector, Green Sector, and Blue Sector.

Red Sector: Red Sector is the heart of the ship, controlling all shipboard functions and housing power controls and heating/cooling systems. Red Sector is located near the aft section of the ship next to Grey Sector – where the MPD Thruster and Nuclear Generator are located.

Cooling and heating systems link up with Grey Sector to keep the reactor stable, and to use excess heat to keep the ship warm in cases of emergency. Heat Vents are also located off the sides of Red Sector, in the case of a heat overload, and case give off this heat using a process very similar to the way that solar panels absorb heat.

Yellow Sector: Yellow Sector is the bowels of the ship, used for storing essential mission supplies, such as food, oxygen, and waste products. Yellow Sector also hosts some solar panel arrays, and redirects the energy from these sources to all electronic shipboard systems. Extra oxygen/nitrogen tanks are also kept outside the ship or emergency purposes.

Green Sector: Green Sector is the lungs of the ship, where the crew eat and sleep, exercise, sanitize, and perform daily functions. A small medical facility is also located here to treat radiation poisoning, accidental inflictions, and general sickness. Green Sector also hosts solar panel arrays, as well as extra oxygen storage for the trip to and from Mars.

Blue Sector: Blue Sector is the brain of the ship, where the crew will conduct communications back to earth via a satellite signal, where the crew can change course and speed, and where all essential shipboard systems are controlled from. Emergency equipment is also held in Blue Sector, as well as storage of important equipment such as space suits and scientific equipment.

Docking: Docking Sector contains supply lines and equipment to be shipped to and from the Mars Lander. It does not rotate, unlike all other sectors, and so is kept in Zero-G. Special equipment for dealing with the zero-G environment is kept here, such as the Canadarm, and other special lifting and handling devices.

Construction: Each Sector is a single section of Deep Red, capsulated like the International Space Station. Using the facilities at the International Space Station, Deep Red can be slowly assembled there, allowing Deep Red to be a space-vehicle only without need for atmospheric exit and re-entry.

A Metal Beam travels along the center of Deep Red, extending from the Docking Sector to Grey Sector, both of which are along the beam. Turbines in the Docking Sector can power up and change gravitational requirements of the rotating Red, Yellow, Green, and Blue Sectors through centrifugal force. The turbines will gradually slow the spin of the sectors en-route to Mars, so that by the time the crew reaches Mars, the illusion of gravity on Deep Red will approximate the actual gravity of Mars. On the way back to Earth, this spin will be increased slowly until the crew is used to the gravity back on earth again.

Mission Schedule:
Leave Earth at a point when the point of departure and point of arrival at Mars will be 100 km separate from each other. If a closer distance can be established, doing so will be beneficial. Mark this as Day 1

Day 73 – At a constant Acceleration of 0.0025 m/s/s provided by 200 Newtons of Force per second, on Day 73 Deep Red must turn around and begin deceleration at a constant pace of -0.0025 m/s/s. Maximum speed during the trip will reach an ASTOUNDING 15811.388 m/s, or nearly 16 km of space every second.

Day 140 – With Mars in sight, correctional flight maneuvers are performed to bring Deep Red into a stable orbit around Mars.

Day 146 – Arrival at Mars. Much singing and dancing. Astronauts given a shot of their favourite drink from back home.

Day 147 – Astronauts, using Exit/Re-entry vehicle, land on the Red Planet. Proceed to pre-fabricated and pre-sent ground base in designated area (see Mars photo). Pressure at this low an elevation on Mars may allow the existence of liquid water.

Day 148 – 176 Astronauts perform a multitude of different Missions before returning to Deep Red on Day 177.

Day 178 – After checking onboard flight status, Astronauts leave Mars orbit and begin acceleration for long voyage home. Since earth will not be within 100 km of Mars again until Day 780, leaving to return to earth when it is in its same position may prove beneficial.

Day 356 – Arrival back at Earth’s ISS. Total time span of mission; 1 year.

Physics of the MPD Thruster:
The MPD Thruster is a variation of common Ion Thrusters. Through use of a magnetically alterable field (like a Mag-Lev), xenon, neon, or other stable gases can be magnetically shot out at high speeds (as high as 110km/s), and provide force of greater than 200 Newtons – equivalent to modern chemical maneuvering rockets.

The drawback to the MPD Thruster is its higher than normal power requirements, in the megawatts of power. However use of a Nuclear Power Plant, like the kind used in Nuclear Submarines, can offset this gross power requirement at excellently low cost and excellent high efficiency.

Examples of smaller nuclear plants can be found in both the Viking Landers as well as the Voyager spacecraft. Although a larger, though more modern, nuclear plant would provide now enough power at very safe levels. The Pebble Bed Reactor (PBR) has a natural maximum flow of energy, and is considered one of the safest forms of generating nuclear power in today’s world. This PBR would be the perfect solution for our space-farers.


[edit on 5/18/2006 by cmdrkeenkid]

posted on May, 18 2006 @ 01:06 PM
Pre-Fabricated Base on Mars:
Before we send our Astronauts in Deep Red, we want to establish a small ground base from which they can launch their missions into the Martian world. A Hydroponics Pod, a Life Support Pod, a Vehicle Bay, and a Landing Pad, are all that are required. These would be sent as a cluster of Pods to land very close to each other on Mars.

The Hydroponics Pod contains plant specimens, as well as a small garden, and biology tools and equipment. The Life Support Pod contains small living arrangements, air testing, cleaning, and circulation, as well as a small medical facility like on Deep Red. The Vehicle Bay contains a Martian Rover and other mechanical and drilling tools. The Landing Pad is simply an area covered in lights for the Exit/Re-Entry Vehicle to land on.

Mission 1: The Primary Mission of the Astronauts once they arrive on Mars will be to Explore. The site chosen for the landing area is one of the deepest on Mars without going into Mar’s great valley – which would be difficult and dangerous to set up a base in since winds going through there blow at nearly half the speed of sound. The Mars Rover would be used to quickly get to nearby hills and rocky outcrops, and to bring equipment to chisel away at some Martian rocks and bring pieces back to the base.

Mission 2: Low-G Hydroponics is essential for any future attempt to colonize Mars. The Hydroponics Pod is well equipped to attempt to grow plants. Numerous experimental genetically engineered plants can be brought to see which do best in Martian light, and which grow best in some of the soil that can be brought in from outside.

Mission 3: Terraforming tests are the stuff of dreams – to turn Mars green. Using algae and other high-resilience plants, Astronauts can attempt to grow small colonies of algae actually in the Martian atmosphere. Some algae can extract moisture from the air and survive in extreme weather conditions. It should be tested to see how well they perform on Mars.

Mission 4: Life tests must be performed on the Martian soil, since the Viking tests proved inconclusive. Martian soil chemistry must be thoroughly examined to see what produces some of the chemical reactions that were observed by the Viking Landers (2 out of 3 tests proved negative, but 1 test proved positive – it was possible that some kind of strange chemistry causes the soil to act as if it has life in it. It should be studied to see what causes that).

Crew Roster:
The following positions need to be filled onboard Deep Red:
Biology Officer
Biology Officer
Mechanical Officer
Mechanical Officer
Mission Officer

Five members will be aboard Deep Red. The Mission Officer will be in charge of coordinating all the other officers, and will also be the main liaison back to Earth. An ability to perform Journalism may be useful, and the setting up of cameras so that everyone back home can experience Mars would be a wondrous experience.

Deep Red Mission Statistics:
Length: 356 Days
Distance Traveled: 200000000 km
Weight of Ship: 80,000kg
Crew: 5
Days on Mars: 30
Cost: Approx. $10,000,000,000.00 (10 billion US Dollars)

Oxygen Candles:
Water Assembly, Carbon Dioxide Filtration, etc:
Solar Panels:
MPD Thruster:
Pebble Bed Reactor:
Life Support:
International Space Station:

T = V/A
Time to reach mid-point between Earth and Mars

F = mass x A
200 = 80000 x A
0.0025 = A

Can also be said to be 0.0025 Newtons of force per kg on the ship. A normal human of 80kg would only experience a force of 0.2 Newtons during the full time the ship is accelerating – or 2% of Earth’s gravity, almost impercievable.

100000000000/2 = 50000000000 metres
(Distance to Mars)/2 = (Half the Distance to Mars) = (Point of Deceleration)

V(2)^2 = V(1)^2 + 2aD
(Maximum Velocity)^2 = (Starting Velocity)^2 + 2(Acceleration)(Half Distance to Mars)

V(2)^2 = 2aD
V(2)^2 = 125000
V(2) = 15811.388 m/s

T = 6324555 seconds = 1756 hours = 73 days

Total Time = 146 days

Special Thanks:

Beachcoma – For helping to lead me in the direction that I wanted to take the project in. His continual postings at the Mission to Mars forums at the Order of Truth helped to keep me on track and not lose sight of the goal, nor the time-frame.

Water-Polo-Fly – Whoever this is on ATS, I am also extremely grateful for your support. Though you were not able to post that often, you did help keep interest up!

Thank you Everyone!

posted on May, 18 2006 @ 01:06 PM

Don't come forward as to who you are, as it could make the judgings biased.


U2U me your judgings, don't post them in this thread.

More on how the contest works can be found here: Mission to Mars: A Space Exploration CONTEST

If you want to enter the contest, you have until the 25th of May to do so still!

Feel free to use this thread to discuss, critique, and comment on this plan!


posted on May, 20 2006 @ 03:54 PM
I noticed there wasn't any mention of radiation protection. Since the trip for Deep Red will take about a year. There should be some measures to block or at least reduce exposure from Galactic Cosmic Rays (GCR). There is also a greater chance that a Solar Partical Event (SPE) could take place during that year long voyage as well.

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