As the 2015 Mission to the Solar System continues, we now begin our month-long visit to the planet Mars.
There’s probably more information available about Mars than any other planet, but most of that information is colored by certain preconceived notions. It’s hard to remain objective about a planet that holds such a prominent place in our collective imaginations.
Many scientists seem to feel strongly that Mars could be friendly to life. Other scientists have the opposite opinion. The debate continues, fueled by tantalizing but often inconclusive clues sent back by our Mars rovers and Mars orbiters.
I for one believe that life once flourished on Mars, and I suspect microbial life of some kind still exists there. I also believe that human colonization of Mars is possible, either using current technology or technology that will be available in the very near future.
But those are only my beliefs. They are my biases as a science enthusiast and science fiction author, and everything I have to say about Mars over the next month will no doubt be colored by my biases. I think it’s important to acknowledge that, both to myself and to you, before we delve into any serious discussion about the Red Planet.
So where do you stand in the ongoing Mars debate? What do you think about the prospects for life on Mars, past, present, and future?