NASA Scientist Proposes Artificial Magnetic Field To Make Mars HabitableBy Chris Brandt, UniversityHerald Reporter
Although the idea of colonizing Mars sounds exciting, scientists and Mars colonizers are faced with a formidable challenge because it has not water, air, and arable land to grow plants. In short, it is uninhabitable unless you wear spacesuits and airtight shelters. This could be solved, however, by creating an artificial magnetic field around Mars.
Jim Green, director of NASA's Planetary Science Division, proposed at a recent workshop held in Washington D.C. to surround Mars with a giant artificial magnetic field that will shield it from the sun's radioactive rays.
According to Green and his colleagues, the magnetic field called Mars L1 will be made up of two giant magnets connected to large inflatable structures. These magnets will be oppositely charged and create enough energy to produce the magnetic field.
He also added that the magnetic field should also be modified so that this magnetic field will always repel the solar winds that are coming towards Mars' atmosphere. Once the magnetic field becomes stable, it will revive the non-existent atmosphere of Mars back to life.
There are theories that Mars was once a wet and warm planet but something happened that weakened its magnetic field. Without protection, its atmosphere was slowly 'eaten' by solar particles until it became a cold, dry planet we know now.
Furthermore, the shield will be able to create a greenhouse effect in Mars' atmosphere and melt its ice caps. Probably one-seventh of the water bodies of Mars might be revived.
The idea of creating an artificial magnetic field seems preposterous but there are already ongoing experiments in hopes of creating a device that will protect astronauts aboard the International Space Station. Green is optimistic that it is possible to create a much stronger magnetic field that would be placed around Mars.