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WEEKLY WHINE

Stump Edvard and win a trip to Mars

As you know, Mars is an awesomely fantastic place, and humans should go there as soon as possible.

For some reason, however, humans persist in not going to Mars quite yet. There are many reasons for this: not enough money, not enough financing, not enough funding. But once these problems are solved, there will be hundreds, thousands, maybe even berskillions of humans on Mars. The sky is the limit.

Actually, exponential population growth and the carrying capacity of local resources are the limit.

But until those limits are reached, the sky remains the limit. Therefore, in the meantime, we invite you to get in touch with “Dynamite Eating” Edvard van de Kamp, who will be happy to help you discover what Mars is like and how to visit there. Here now are the answers he has provided to several people who asked him about Mars.


Dear Edvard: Does Mars have a sea level?

– Blessing Okunwode
Adelaide, SA, Australia

Dear Blessing: There are no seas, so there is no sea level. However, there is a datum defined as a reference point, and altitudes on Mars are given with respect to this datum.


Dear Edvard: How high is Olympus Mons?

– Shandrette Bailey
Sault Ste Marie, MI, USA

Dear Shandrette: That depends. If you measure against the datum, it is 21,287 m. If you measure against the local topography, it is about 22,000 m.


Dear Edvard: How long do dust storms on Mars last?

– Juanita Juresevic
Lubbock, TX, USA

Dear Juanita: Dust storms lasting more than a month and covering the entire globe are fairly common on Mars. Human missions that use solar panels will need to prepare for these events. There will be a loss of sunlight during the storm, but the deposits of dust will also affect the panels. Crews will have to find a way to clean the panels carefully.


Dear Edvard: I heard that Mars has short winters and long summers. If that’s the case, sign me up!

– Juniper Helgenberg
Park Town, ME, USA

Dear Juniper: In Mars’s northern hemisphere, that is true. Even so, the long summer is not that warm. High temperatures tend to be around 273 K, and lows tend to be around 180 K. So you should still wrap up.


Dear Edvard: Is there dry ice on the surface of Mars? Because that would make for some awesome concerts.

– Billie Raven
North Hollywood, CA, USA

Dear Billie: Mars’s polar ice caps are primarily water ice, but on the southern ice cap, this is covered by a layer of dry ice. During the northern winter, dry ice is also deposited on top of the northern cap. Lasers not included.


Dear Edvard: Why does Mars exist?

– Amber Giselle
Montego, Jamaica

Dear Amber: Because it formed during the Solar System’s early history, about four and one half billion years ago. Mars and the other terrestrial planets – Mercury, Venus, and Earth – are found within the Sun’s frost line, which means that at their distance from the Sun, it was too warm to form ices of volatiles like water and carbon dioxide. As a result, Mars is composed mainly of heavy elements; its core is mostly iron and nickel.


Dear Edvard: Why haven’t we sent humans to Mars yet?

– June Loibert
Altadena, CA, USA

Dear June: Because we as humans are constantly distracted by space stations, wars, walls, movies, and Internets. However, there are a number of organisations planning human missions to Mars. NASA, of course, is perpetually planning a Mars mission and is totally ready to do it whenever it gets the money. The China National Space Administration has occasionally mentioned plans for Mars missions. And several private organisations, including SpaceX, are developing missions to Mars.


Dear Edvard: I’m going to visit the Face of Mars! I’ll be the first one to discover the truth about the ancient astronauts who taught the Egyptians how to make the Sphinx and taught the Druids how solstices work! I’ll enter the face and speak the words of power, which will unlock the potential found within all humans! This will introduce a new golden age of peace, prosperity, and unobstructed breathing! You can throw your nasal strips away, because I’m going to lead humanity into a breathtaking new future beyond anything you could have dreamed! And it will all happen once I obtain sufficient funding to turn my Winnebago into a spaceship in accordance with the instructions I received in a dream! Don’t miss it!

– Leslie China
San Francisco, CA, USA

Dear Leslie: Just let us know when you find the chainsaw fuel.

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