Why cant we live on Mars?

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Also was Mars once a habitable planet?

Sangeetha Pulapaka

The debate of life on Mars and that Martians may exist has been going on since a long time.

The possibility of life on Mars is a subject of significant interest because of the proximity and similarities to earth. To date, no proof has been found of past or present life on Mars. Cumulative evidence shows that during the ancient period, the surface environment of Mars had liquid water and may have been habitable for microorganisms. The existence of habitable conditions does not necessarily indicate the presence of life.

Geologists at Brown University used a climate model of early Mars to simulate how, despite freezing temperatures, water could have flowed. The model suggested that although Mars was frozen most of the time, during the Martian summer the temperature may have risen just enough above freezing to allow for melting at the edges of glaciers.The melted water was probably produced in relatively small amounts. But over millions of years, there may have been enough melted water to carve the valleys and lakebeds we see on the surface of Mars today.

The other important thing for life is climate. Mars is a planet that shows climate change on a large scale. The climate of Mars comes from a variety of factors, including its ice caps, water vapor and dust storms. At times, giant dust storms can blanket the entire planet and last for months, turning the sky hazy and red.

The atmosphere of Mars is about 100 times thinner than Earth's, and it is 95 percent carbon dioxide. Here's a breakdown of its composition, according to a NASA fact sheet:

Carbon dioxide: 95.32 percent

Nitrogen: 2.7 percent

Argon: 1.6 percent

Oxygen: 0.13 percent

Carbon monoxide: 0.08 percent

Also, minor amounts of: water, nitrogen oxide, neon, hydrogen-deuterium-oxygen, krypton and xenon

So, with its climate no human being could live on Mars for now. But efforts are on to make this possible. NASA is forging ahead with plans to make water and oxygen available on Mars. Elon Musk officially announced that he will be sending humans to Mars in 2024 in SpaceX.  Boeing recently announced that it will get to the Red planet, before SpaceX does. So, we have to just wait and see!