Episode 153: A Reality Check on Terraforming Mars, with Bruce Jakosky

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Feature Guest: Bruce Jakosky

Don’t shoot the messenger. The terraforming of Mars has been the dream for many of us who long for a future where humanity has colonized the Red Planet. But is it time to rethink those plans? Today we’re joined here at The Star Spot by Bruce Jakosky, Principal Investigator of the Martian MAVEN Mission, and he’s got some bad news.



Current in Space

Dave spotlights the first confirmed detection of an extrasolar moon, and its a whopper. Then Tony shares new research suggesting that a key component of life may have originated in space before landing on Earth. And Simon delivers a tribute to NASA in honour of the agency’s 60th anniversary.

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About Our Guest

Bruce Jakosky is Principal Investigator for NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution, or MAVEN, mission, which has been studying the Martian atmosphere from orbit. He is Professor of Geological Sciences and Associate Director for Science at the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics at the University of Colorado.


Inventory of CO2 available for terraforming Mars (Scholarly article in NatureAstronomy, referenced in this interview)

Previous episodes of The Star Spot on the subject of Terraforming Mars
Episode 101: The Great Terraforming Mars Debate – Part 1: The Science, with Paul Delaney
Episode 102: The Great Terraforming Mars Debate – Part 2: The Biology, with Olathe MacIntyre
Episode 103: The Great Terraforming Mars Debate – Part 3: The Ethics, with John Rummel 
Episode 104: The Great Terraforming Mars Debate – Part 4: The Dream, with Chuck Black 

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One comment on “Episode 153: A Reality Check on Terraforming Mars, with Bruce Jakosky

  1. Easier, and maybe even more useful, than making Mars similar to Earth, would be to turn it into a different kind of biosphere. Maybe life can be bio engineered to thrive on Mars as it is today. Maybe an ecosystem could be created that produces useful things for us at a large scale, that would not be able to grow on Earth.

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