A group of scientists came up with a project for local terraforming of the Red Planet. According to the idea of the authors, the central part of the project is the creation of a lake of liquid water on the surface, or rather, almost on the surface.
To create a lake, you need a large excavation in the ground and a stably positive temperature around. Then the water, which, according to modern ideas, is concentrated in the form of ice in the near-surface layers of the Martian soil, will melt, will gather in the depression and will exist in the form of a reservoir long enough – hundreds or even thousands of years. During this time, the colonists will have time to settle around.
To achieve the desired, Mars is offered at a decent speed to “drop” an asteroid of a suitable size. It will happen in 2036, according to the authors of the project, who, by the way, prefer not to disclose their names, the choice of the year is also not explained. To Mars, an asteroid will fly under a convoy of a special probe equipped with equipment capable of changing its orbit by ablation (evaporation) of a part of the surface. If an asteroid hits the planet, one quintillion (one with 18 zeros) of joules of energy should be allocated to the planet, a significant part of which will go to the warming up of the rocks around. As a result, a crater 9 km in diameter and a little more than a kilometer in depth is formed on the surface of the planet, and a 3-km radius of water will appear on its bottom after a while. After the processes in the crater stabilize, the temperature of the near-surface water layers in the lake will be about 11 degrees Celsius. For swimming it’s cool, but on Mars and this will come at an opportune time.
Scheme of the crater. Fig. Group The Lake Matthew Team
The crater and, apparently, the area around it, is proposed to be called Omaha (Omaha) in honor of one of the bridgeheads on which Allied troops landed in Normandy in the summer of 1944.
Settled in the crater, people will build for themselves and for growing shelter food, approximately stadium sizes. Over time, the ecosystem that has developed in the crater will provide enough oxygen to form an ozone layer in the upper layers of the Craterian atmosphere, which will protect local residents from radiation. However, the authors keep silent about when and how it will happen.
One of the Martian shelters from the inside. Fig. Group The Lake Matthew Team
The basis of the local economy will be the collection of remains of previously fallen asteroids on the planet. It is assumed that they are rich in rare-earth metals, the extraction of which will pay for all expenses. From calculations, the authors again abstain, and they can be understood: it is very difficult to predict metal prices in 2036.
If everything goes smoothly, then in 2061 (the choice of the year is not explained again), it will be possible to repeat the attempt by hitting Mars with a larger body.
A rather extensive text is attached to the communication about the project, in which the authors describe those places where the most probable are the pitfalls associated with the lack of information about the planet, insufficient consideration of the factors involved, and so on.
The group that proposed the project calls itself The Lake Matthew Team. Apparently, it took its name in honor of the future of the lake, and it was named after the MATT project – Mars Terraformer Transfer. It is reported that in legal and other business matters the interests of the group are represented by Harness Dickey & Pierce. Apparently, this is the only thing that makes us see in the project something more serious than the intellectual entertainment of the pupils of one of the American universities.