Undeniable Fact: Ain't no cars on mars!

Monday, March 05, 2007

Perhaps the largest obstacle to colonizing Mars is that for reasons unexplained by modern science, the planet has no gravitational pull. Some have suggested using magnets to overcome this problem. But until shielding technology improves, it's simply too dangerous to expose humans to that much magnetism.

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Blogger Christophe said...

The formula for gravitational force is:
Gravitational force = (G * m1 * m2) / (d^2)
G being the gravitational constant, 6.67*10^-11
m1 being the mass of the first object
m2 being the mass of the second object
d being the distance between the two of them.

In this case, let's pretend m1 is the mass of a human body (around 50kg)
and m2 is the mass of mars (6.4185×10^23)
Distance is the distance from the body to the planet, here it's 0(pretending you're on the ground)
so the formula ends up being



any good calculator will give you an error, because it is impossible to calculate any division by zero, thus, mars has no gravitational pull.

10:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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9:31 PM  
Blogger Psyche said...

Sorry, Christophe, but that's just not true. :( The distance is how far it is from the center of each object, so the distance in this case would be the radius of Mars.

4:32 PM  
Blogger John said...

Actually, the distance that should be used is the distance between the two object's centers of mass. However the centers of mass would be exponentially proportional to the radii, meaning the larger the radius, the further away the object's center of mass will be. In this case, Mars's center of mass happens to be very near the surface of the planet. Technically, the denominator of the universial law of gravity would be a very small number like 0.0000000008; in reality, the number is so small and, insignificant, it's negligible.

1:12 PM  
Blogger Psyche said...

Sorry, but that's just plain wrong...

11:14 PM  
Blogger duffytoler said...

Mar's small gravitational acceleration is cancelled out by its double moon system - everybody knows that. The Mars rovers had to employ an electrostatic attraction system just to stay on the ground!

4:35 PM  
Blogger Jiahui said...

Do a Google search on "gravitational pull of mars" and tell me which site says Mars has no gravitational pull.
The laws of physics state that any object with mass must have gravitational pull, therefore unless Mars has no mass, it must have graviational pull.
Besides, based on christophe's suggestion, Earth would also have no gravitational pull since we're all on Earth's surface. I think it's time you revised your basic astronomy.

10:45 AM  
Blogger duffytoler said...

Jiahui - you are confusing "mass" with "weight", this is a common mistake that trips up many a novice when they first try to calculate celestial mechanics (there's a REASON they call it "Rocket Science"!)

Gravitational attraction can be cancelled out by having two opposing masses. This is probably the case with Mar's two moons, but, as Dan mentioned, it is as yet unexplained by modern science. Beagle2 was suppose to have resolved the issue once and for all, but alas - like so many other Mars missions, it was a failure. As such, all we have to go on is the basic math, which Christophe tried to explain to you.

7:17 AM  

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