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let's put life on Mars!

Let's put some life on Mars!
 
(+7, -7)
  [vote for,
against]

I've had this idea last night. next time, when we send a probe to Mars - let's put some grass seeds, some mushroom spores, a handful of pine cones and maybe a pound of Brie cheese with some nice bacteria in it, to fertilize Mars! It's a lonely desert but it's atmosphere is saturated with CO2 and plants would just love it! They would pump some O2 into the atmosphere. Who knows, maybe 10, 15 years down the road it would turn into Green Planet entirely covered with grass! What a paradise for golf players..
rubypretzel, Dec 15 2009

A bit like this? http://en.wikipedia...erraforming_of_Mars
[wagster, Dec 16 2009]

Could work for Chihuahuas. Rover_20Rover
[shudderprose, Dec 16 2009]

N uke Mars Nuke_20Mars
It blowed up real good. [bungston, Dec 16 2009]

it might attract mice http://astrogeology...oads/mars_mouse.jpg
[xandram, Dec 16 2009]

Nasa looking for ideas for mars http://www.smh.com....20120414-1wzsd.html
[JesusHChrist, Apr 14 2012]

Baked, sort of. http://arxiv.org/abs/1204.1719
6x10^23 kg of (presumably) bacteria-laden ejecta to Mars. Edit: well, no not exactly. [mouseposture, Apr 14 2012, last modified Apr 19 2012]

Vegetable Garden on Mars http://www.wired.co...10/ff-elon-musk-qa/
[AusCan531, Nov 07 2012]

[link]






       Yeah! Why don't we drop some babies on there too!
DrWorm, Dec 15 2009
  

       Unfortunately, Mars needs women.
leinypoo13, Dec 15 2009
  

       <Obscure song reference>...Mars needs women, China needs women, Kramer needs lyrics for his stupid song....</>   

       Chia Mars.
jutta, Dec 16 2009
  

       I had a romance with this idea about a year ago. Boned and MFD'd extensively. took it down in about a day.
WcW, Dec 16 2009
  

       [rubypretzel], welcome to the Halfbakery.   

       I'd like to try your idea, but I'd eat the Brie and substitute some old cheddar, I think.   

       Golf players will complain no matter what you do for them - read the help file on the left, over there under "meta", and again, welcome.
normzone, Dec 16 2009
  

       jutta - I loved your comment. "chia Mars" LMFAO!
rubypretzel, Dec 16 2009
  

       I got 6 entries for define:chia and are still none the wiser. 41/2 could possibly make sense. Did google miss something?
wjt, Dec 16 2009
  

       //California's animal shelters are being overrun with Chihuahuas //
That seems unlikely, given that they're usually flummoxed by a tall step.
coprocephalous, Dec 16 2009
  

       Terraforming is a bit over the top but a few localized experiments might be interesting. It's a big lab with a large isolation zone. What could go wrong?
wjt, Dec 16 2009
  

       Recent news reports indicate that golfers are keen on procreation. Is this part of your plan for introducing life to Mars?
hippo, Dec 16 2009
  

       //chihuahuas are actually daleks in disguise//   

       "DEFECATE!!! DEFECATE!!!"
wagster, Dec 16 2009
  

       wjt, try "chia pet"
dentworth, Dec 16 2009
  

       // old cheddar //   

       Mature Stilton ...   

       // scooping up all the surplus chihuahuas //   

       Tautology - all chihuahuas are surplus to requirements.   

       // dumping them all on Mars. //   

       Too close, and too chihuahua friendly environment-wise. How about Io, or Europa ?
8th of 7, Dec 16 2009
  

       We don't know there's no life there right now. I've forsworn the fishbone, but i can't vote for this, sorry.   

       On the other hand, i would vote for doing this on a body where it can be demonstrated almost for sure that there's no life but where life could survive.
nineteenthly, Dec 16 2009
  

       The bacteria and possibly a few lichens would survive. Very few terrestrial plants are cold hardy to -100 degrees C. Those that are likely will not do well with at best 45% weaker sunlight, extensive UV and ionizing radiation.   

       Terraforming is probably possible, but it would have to start with atmospheric thickening and tailoring to produce a habitable environment. (Rust metabolizing bacteria to produce CO2, methanogenic bacteria, both to increase the greenhouse effect; a couple of comets to increase free water; etc.)
MechE, Dec 16 2009
  

       Let's cover Mars in milk chocolate after the probe drops soft nougat and caramel on the surface, then wrap it up.
skinflaps, Dec 16 2009
  

       I think much of the life on Earth has evolved away from the 'bootstrap' forms that existed early on - and now rely on the existence of other life in order to survive themselves.   

       You'd need to start with something very very simple - something that can pull free CO² out of the air in order to build more copies of itself from Carbon polymers, perhaps releasing a bit of O² in the process. Leave for a few millenia, and then, maybe - you will have generated enough O² to boost the atmosphere and form a viable ozone layer and foster spontaneous water-vapour production. Then, you might be able to introduce something more interesting.   

       A biodome might be an alternate starting point - you build a shelter - say a big plate of glass (though you'd have to keep it clean of dust somehow) or dig a great big hole deep enough for it to have its own climatic/atmospheric conditions and then supply it with enough water and nutrients to maintain some simple life for a few millennia (a similar problem to leaving the cat unattended for a couple of weeks while you go on holiday) in the hope that this tiny pocket of life will somehow take root and begin to spread into more hostile conditions - again, it's a long-term project, and there's no certainty of success.
zen_tom, Dec 16 2009
  

       [Zen_tom]: <sub> tag needed, don't you think?
nineteenthly, Dec 16 2009
  

       The slow has caught the humor. Good one. I don't think I should use 'define:'.   

       Maybe the cheese idea is a good one. That is, supply a slight framing media as well. A crystal brick with holes and tunnels to give the 'life' a bit of shelter.   

       Nature is a twisty-turny thing. You would never be quite sure what will turn up 1% of the time.
wjt, Dec 16 2009
  

       More convenient, shirley, to spend a few years selecting for Marsophilic microbes in a terrestrial lab, before setting them loose on Mars?
MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 16 2009
  

       I agree with [zen_tom] about the bootstrap. Most of the time everything relies on everything else. You would need a mini-ecosystem and a fair amount of biomasse for this to work, like maybe a planet-wide layer of nougat or a mole of oranges.
nineteenthly, Dec 16 2009
  

       Chihuahua chia?
Chi-chi-chihuahua!
RayfordSteele, Dec 17 2009
  

       Perhaps with the mutation-inducing UV rays, Mickey Mouse really could grow up a cow.
coprocephalous, Dec 17 2009
  

       Methinks you'd be saying ciao to the chihuahua.   

       Is that the collective noun, [bigsleep]?
nineteenthly, Dec 17 2009
  

       Hmmm, if there were a way to speed up Mars rate of rotation, would water trapped below the surface be forced to rise from centrifugal force?   

       // Mickey Mouse really could grow up a cow. //   

       .... Or Would You Rather Be a Fish ?
8th of 7, Dec 17 2009
  

       Whizzimars!
nineteenthly, Dec 17 2009
  

       //a pound of Brie cheese with some nice bacteria in it, to fertilize Mars!// So how do you explain the absence of life on the moon, eh? eh?
pocmloc, Dec 17 2009
  

       //fails to propose any mechanism at all//
I thought it was about shipping out chihuahuas and golfers?
Life, maybe, but not necessarily intelligent life.
coprocephalous, Dec 18 2009
  

       The mechanism would be a bit of a no-brainer though. Isn't there a camera on the Moon which didn't get sterilised properly and ended up with bacteria in it which survived for a while or something?   

       I suppose there's a bit of an issue keeping things safe from radiation between Earth and Mars, but if the package is small enough that doesn't seem insurmountable. A strong magnetic field and some lead shielding should do it, i'd've thought.   

       The big problem would be getting it to survive at the other end due to the lack of resources.
nineteenthly, Dec 18 2009
  

       //Isn't there a camera on the Moon which didn't get sterilised properly //
No, it's back on Earth now, having been retrieved by the Apollo 12 mission.
coprocephalous, Dec 18 2009
  

       //would cause an interplanetary war// should not be a problem here.
pocmloc, Dec 18 2009
  

       come to that, the Earth is in a better position: Mars might have the "high ground" and easier access to the asteroid belt, but we have the resources... and 1kw/m2 ain't peanuts.
FlyingToaster, Dec 18 2009
  

       //fertilize Mars// May already have happened. <link>
mouseposture, Apr 14 2012
  

       //6x10^23 kg of (presumably) bacteria-laden ejecta to Mars//
Seems unlikely, assuming that the Earth has a mass of only about 6x10^24 kg.
AbsintheWithoutLeave, Apr 17 2012
  

       Well sure, now it does.
bungston, Apr 19 2012
  

       //Seems unlikely// You're right, I read carelessly. Ought to have cited a figure for "estimated number of rocks," which, if I understand correctly their Table I, is either 2e7 or 4e10 depending on which of their models you go by. Given the large difference between the two estimates, the authors settle on a value of "much greater than one."
mouseposture, Apr 19 2012
  

       Elon Musk is copying this idea by trying to put a veggie garden on Mars. [link]
AusCan531, Nov 07 2012
  
      
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