Elon Musk Plans to Nuke Mars


Oliver Jamias, Contributor

Moving to other planets has been a recent interest that scientists and engineers have been looking for a solution to, to no avail. Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus, and Neptune are all made of gas, meaning humans would not be able to live on the surface, or anywhere else for that matter. Mercury, being the planet closest to the Sun, would be incredibly hot during the day but extremely cold at night.  This leaves Venus and Mars, two planets similar in size and structure to Earth. However, Venus is too hot to realistically survive on, while Mars, conversely, is too cold. Elon Musk, CEO of Space X and Tesla, has proposed an idea that may seem bizarre at first: launch and detonate nuclear warheads at Mars to make it more habitable.

The ambitious billionaire expressed his interest in this idea to hasten the process of inhabiting of Mars before, saying that the detonations would be able to change the planet and environment into something similar to Earth. This task also seems easier than heating the whole of Venus, as Venus is larger than Mars, and thus, in terms of technology available to the human race, would require more effort. The detonations would cause a multitude of effects, such as the melting of the ice caps and the release of carbon dioxide, both of which can contribute to the goal of human life on Mars by creating an environment with suitable heat levels and an atmosphere comparable to Earth.

.The heat produced from the explosions would also be able to directly support life on Mars by warming up the chilly planet.

However, NASA does not agree with this point of view, saying that “Transforming the inhospitable Martian environment into a place astronauts could explore without life support is not possible without technology well beyond today’s capabilities” in a study they conducted on the possibility of living on Mars. Another point researchers made was that Mars does not have carbon dioxide to realistically sustain human life; even if scientists and engineers were able to terraform the Red Planet, Mars would possibly still be too cold for liquid water to exist. Detonating nuclear bombs would also cause other problems, like the launching of debris into the air, the nuclear fallout making an area unsafe to live in, or the formation of clouds, all of which slow down progress and make Mars even more uninhabitable than it already is.

Musk has been promoting his aspirations as much as he can, starting with selling new merchandise featuring the tagline “Nuke Mars”. The first piece of merchandise to be sold is a shirt that costs $25. Considering that the entrepreneur made millions in under three days selling limited time flamethrowers, the amount of money made from this business venture can be expected to be rather high. Nevertheless, if NASA’s statement is taken into consideration, this will be all for naught, and Elon Musk’s wish of dying on Mars might not come true, at least not in his lifetime.