Elon Musk has a better idea than “Nuke Mars” to make the planet hospitable, this time using SpaceX satellites to reflect sunlight. | Photo by Mark RALSTON / AFP
By CCN Markets: Elon Musk has leaked more of his plans to make Mars habitable. The SpaceX boss tweeted an alternative idea to warm the red planet’s inhospitable surface via the use of reflective satellites. While the “Nuke Mars” slogan has been attracting a lot of attention, these latest ideas demonstrate just how seriously Musk is taking this project.
Might make sense to have thousands of solar reflector satellites 🛰 to warm Mars vs artificial suns (tbd)
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 20, 2019
Elon Musk Raises Possibility of Using Satellites to Warm Mars
The prospect of exploding a nuclear bomb on Mars to create atmosphere-forming greenhouses gases is such an ambitious project that it could only have come from the mind of Elon Musk. Now though, the SpaceX boss is thinking about less spectacular options. If a nuclear reaction isn’t going to be successful (and many believe it wouldn’t be), Musk needs a plan B.
Nuke Mars Is One of Musk’s Most Speculative Ideas
Using reflective satellites is certainly a less sexy option than using intermittent nuclear blasts to create artificial suns, but it might be more straightforward. The danger associated with “Nuke Mars” is creating a nuclear winter, making the planet even less hospitable than it already is. There is also the chance that no atmosphere would form at all; warming satellites wouldn’t be nearly so risky. Contrary to these views, Musk has personally made it clear he doesn’t believe there are serious risks of Mars being drenched in radiation.