Click here to learn about Academy events, publications and initiatives around COVID-19.

We are experiencing intermittent technical difficulties. At this time, you may not be able to log in, register for an event, or make a donation via the website. We appreciate your patience, and apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

Our site is under planned maintenance. At this time, you will not be able to log in, register for an event, or make a donation via the website. We appreciate your patience, and apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

Support The World's Smartest Network
×

Help the New York Academy of Sciences bring late-breaking scientific information about the COVID-19 pandemic to global audiences. Please make a tax-deductible gift today.

DONATE
This site uses cookies.
Learn more.

×

This website uses cookies. Some of the cookies we use are essential for parts of the website to operate while others offer you a better browsing experience. You give us your permission to use cookies, by continuing to use our website after you have received the cookie notification. To find out more about cookies on this website and how to change your cookie settings, see our Privacy policy and Terms of Use.

We encourage you to learn more about cookies on our site in our Privacy policy and Terms of Use.

eBriefing

What Will it Take to Bring Humans to Mars?

What Will it Take to Bring Humans to Mars?
Reported by
Kari Fischer

Posted July 24, 2020

Presented By

The New York Academy of Sciences

Human bodies are optimized for life on Earth, and ill-equipped for environments like those we will encounter on Mars. But here at home there are organisms that thrive in the extremes: the coldest, hottest, driest, and saltiest places. As technologies like CRISPR enable us to manipulate our genes, there may be adaptive tools we can borrow from these extremophiles. But while we are absorbed in self-preservation, it will be easy to neglect the planet we hope to colonize. After all, humans do not have the best track record when it comes to ethical exploration. While there is no evidence for life on Mars—yet—there is still the matter of an entire land that has no one to speak for it, or to defend it. So in the process of getting humans to Mars, what values may be compromised along the way? In this eBriefing you will hear from three scientists who study Mars-like environments here on Earth, the effects of space travel on human health, and the ethics of space exploration. Together, they paint an exciting but cautionary vision for 2035—the year humans might land on Mars.

In this eBriefing, You’ll Learn:

  • The environment humans will encounter on Mars
  • Hazards of long-term spaceflight for the human body
  • The state of the science for human gene editing
  • Ethical challenges for human space exploration

Moderator

Brooke Grindlinger, PhD
Brooke Grindlinger, PhD

New York Academy of Sciences

Panelists

Kennda Lynch
Kennda Lynch, PhD

Lunar and Planetary Institute

Christopher Mason
Christopher Mason, PhD

Weill Cornell Medicine

Lucianne Walkowicz
Lucianne Walkowicz, PhD

The JustSpace Alliance; Adler Plantarium

The Very Human Challenges of Mars Exploration