NASA Plans to Put a Magnetic Shield Around Mars
March 20, 2017
The current state of Mars is known to be dry, cold and unlivable, but a new idea from scientist may have found a way to change these conditions with the help of a magnetic shield reported by phys.org.
The idea came from NASA’s Planetary Science Division, PSD, during their community workshop called Planetary Science Vision 2050 Workshop hosted in their headquarters in Washington, DC between Feb. 27 to Mar. 1. Scientist and researchers from all around the world came to the event that had presentations and panel discussions, including discussions on the future of space travel.
The last day was when the idea was presented by Jim Green, director of PSD, with the discussion being titled A Future Mars Environment for Science and Exploration. Green talked about how a magnetic field would help strengthen Mars’ atmosphere and make it easier for crews to go on missions.
A general agreement in the scientific community is that at one point Mars had a magnetic shield like Earth that protected its atmosphere, but then around 4.2 billion years ago the shield disappeared and Mars’ atmosphere went from being warm to a cold and dry place.
Part of the plan Green described was having a magnetic shield shot between orbit of Mars and the Sun that would be made of an electric circuit strong enough to create an artificial shield. With the shield it would allow Mars’ atmosphere to slowly repair in a few years and past a certain point as the atmosphere rebuilds the greenhouse effect would take place, it may even get warm enough for water to exist on the planet’s surface by melting ice caps holding water.
These potential changes to the planet’s atmosphere would not only help revert the planet’s surface, but also make it more easy for scientist to be able to explore the planet paving the way to colonization. As of now Green and his colleagues are testing the theory with simulations and reviewing results to see how long these potential changes would happen.