Colonization: Venus better than Mars?



Let’s see … boiling sulfuric acid versus a rocky surface with thin CO2 atmosphere? Hmmm…
Colonize earth maybe?

Probably be easier to ‘spin up’ the Moon.


We must end this space sexism! Equal access to Mars and Venus!

Wait… What are you hiding?

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Funny you should mention Europa, since, if I remember Rendezvous With Rama correctly, human beings were spread across the solar system from Mercury to Neptune, but Venus remained too difficult to colonize.

If gravity is the main issue, then in terms of a cost/benefit analysis, building an orbital space colony and spinning it up is infinitely preferable to deploying a cloud city.

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What about Ceres? Low escape velocity, for the win.

What’s with this “low gravity is bad for humans” stuff. Yes, zero gravity has many negative health effects… but we have no data whatsoever on the long term health impact of low gravity environments… because after 60 years of manned space exploration, we still haven’t bothered to run any experiments with rotating a spacecraft to create artificial gravity and monitoring the effects of that on people or even on lab rats.

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It’s not like the gravity issue is impossible to deal with, having the astronauts live inside a spinning donut-shaped habitat would work just as well on the surface of Mars (or some other body like the Moon) as it would in an orbiting space colony. Just choose the spin rate so the vector sum of the centrifugal force vector and the actual gravity vector give a total 1G acceleration, and angle the floors so they’re perpendicular to the direction of the vector sum, and you’re good to go.


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On the other hand, if we could deal with the terrible conditions, we’re left with much richer natural resources to exploit. And really, why else would our species go to a distant planet - the scenery?

I’ve believed for a long time that the real breakthrough isn’t space flight - it’s profitable space flight. Humans can overcome any obstacle if there’s a big enough paycheck on the other side.


So, you’ve got your floaty cities way up in the cloud layer . . . but your minerals would have to be mined with pricey robots, and refined down there in expensive and hard to maintain factories or brought up and refined in your cities which would have to be bigger and need more volatiles and oh yeah Venus has had most of its nice volatiles cooked off.

Just . . . no. Settle Mars, or better yet settle asteroids and make nice sealed habitats with any gravity level you want.


stay away from Europa, and don’t attempt any landings there

Yeah that did not work out well for the Chinese

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I could see the whole cloud city thing being feasible, but not for any significant number of people.It would probably only be useful as a base to supervise the massive, centuries-long process of terraforming Venus into something that is actually habitable, without all the drawbacks of being a hyperbaric corrosive furnace (Seriously, the video shrugged off “massive quantities of hot vaporised sulphuric acid” as if it was a minor problem).

And for the required investment of time and resources, I suspect that constructing artificial habitats at L1-L5 would be a better investment and less destructive than terraforming, but that may just be my Cultural biases showing.

There’s no prejudice against the French or Pentaphiles here.

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“I can’t allow you or Cmdr Poole to endanger this mission…”

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read the report - 5 pages - utterly fascinating

Colonization of Venus -
by Geoffrey A. Landis, NASA Glenn Research Center
Conference on Human Space Exploration, Space Technology & Applications International Forum
Albuquerque, NM, Feb. 2-6 2003.

Or this

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Mine’s got more blood. :wink:

In reality I expect near Earth asteroids will be the first targets for colonisation. Easy and fast to get to from LEO. Adequate resources, including solar energy.

The same kind of chauvinism he associates with walking on the surface of places, also applies to our insistence on sending humans someplace before we Can think of it as useful. The L5 colony assumed you’d need huge cities in space for significant activity, but the technology has made that vision obsolete. We’re more likely to send up robot factories than human powered ones.

He also treats distance as a significant factor when the real issue is delta vee. It’s surprisingly much harder to send stuff toward the sun than to send it away. The payload must she’d a lot of orbital velocity relative to the sun before it can rendezvous with another gravity well.

His surfaceism argument should apply to mars as well:phobos is far easier to reach than the Martian surface, and would be an ideal spot from which to Tele-operate equipment without the lightspeed radio lag of earth based control.

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