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View Diary: On Mars: Clues to the Red Planet's Wet Past Continue to Pile Up (27 comments)

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  •  What you said: "Blue Mars, baby!" (3+ / 0-)
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    Aunt Pat, Odysseus, Tool

    Amen to that.

    And I think we're going to discover that native construction materials can be used to build all the structural walls for extensive colonies.  The key to the kingdom is pozzolanic deposits from volcanos.  

    Though, we clearly want to build far from any likely volcanos because they are probably quite a bit more active and dangerous than volcanos here on Earth.  

    So I gotta' question:  Is there any way to tell if Martian sand is suitable for making glass that in turn is transparent enough to use for greenhouses?   From what we see, it would appear that the sand is all reddish, and that might be OK: transmitting more infrared and blocking more ultraviolet would be an advantage.    

    Melting sand into glass would be done with solar concentrators.   The process could be automated to some degree, since it might take some time to heat the material sufficiently with the amount of sunlight that could be collected.

    If we can produce "glass" as well as "concrete" up there, that further reduces the amount of mass we'd need to lift from Earth to build colonies.  

    "Minus two votes for the Republican" equals "plus one vote for the Democrat." Arithmetic doesn't care about their feelings either!

    by G2geek on Sat Oct 13, 2012 at 04:18:08 PM PDT

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