We're ready. Though Mars is distant, we are far better prepared today to send humans to Mars than we were to travel to the Moon at the commencement of the space age. Given the will, we could have our first teams on Mars within a decade.
The reasons for going to Mars are powerful.
We must go for the knowledge of Mars. Our robotic probes have revealed that Mars was once a warm and wet planet, suitable for hosting life's origin. But did it? A search for fossils on the Martian surface or microbes in groundwater below could provide the answer. If found, they would show that the origin of life is not unique to the Earth, and, by implication, reveal a universe that is filled with life and probably intelligence as well. From the point of view learning our true place in the universe, this would be the most important scientific enlightenment since Copernicus.
We must go for the knowledge of Earth. As we begin the twenty-first century, we have evidence that we are changing the Earth's atmosphere and environment in significant ways. It has become a critical matter for us better to understand all aspects of our environment. In this project, comparative planetology is a very powerful tool, a fact already shown by the role Venusian atmospheric studies played in our discovery of the potential threat of global warming by greenhouse gases. Mars, the planet most like Earth, will have even more to teach us about our home world. The knowledge we gain could be key to our survival.
We must go for the challenge. Civilizations, like people, thrive on challenge and decay without it. The time is past for human societies to use war as a driving stress for technological progress. As the world moves towards unity, we must join together, not in mutual passivity, but in common enterprise, facing outward to embrace a greater and nobler challenge than that which we previously posed to each other. Pioneering Mars will provide such a challenge. Furthermore, a cooperative international exploration of Mars would serve as an example of how the same joint-action could work on Earth in other ventures.
We must go for the youth. The spirit of youth demands adventure. A humans-to-Mars program would challenge young people everywhere to develop their minds to participate in the pioneering of a new world. If a Mars program were to inspire just a single extra percent of today's youth to scientific educations, the net result would be tens of millions more scientists, engineers, inventors, medical researchers and doctors. These people will make innovations that create new industries, find new medical cures, increase income, and benefit the world in innumerable ways to provide a return that will utterly dwarf the expenditures of the Mars program.
We must go for the opportunity. The settling of the Martian New World is an opportunity for a noble experiment in which humanity has another chance to shed old baggage and begin the world anew; carrying forward as much of the best of our heritage as possible and leaving the worst behind. Such chances do not come often, and are not to be disdained lightly.
We must go for our humanity. Human beings are more than merely another kind of animal, -we are life's messenger. Alone of the creatures of the Earth, we have the ability to continue the work of creation by bringing life to Mars, and Mars to life. In doing so, we shall make a profound statement as to the precious worth of the human race and every member of it.
We must go for the future. Mars is not just a scientific curiosity; it is a world with a surface area equal to all the continents of Earth combined, possessing all the elements that are needed to support not only life, but technological society. It is a New World, filled with history waiting to be made by a new and youthful branch of human civilization that is waiting to be born. We must go to Mars to make that potential a reality. We must go, not for us, but for a people who are yet to be. We must do it for the Martians.
Believing therefore that the exploration and settlement of Mars is one of the greatest human endeavors possible in our time, we have gathered to found this Mars Society, understanding that even the best ideas for human action are never inevitable, but must be planned, advocated, and achieved by hard work. We call upon all other individuals and organizations of like-minded people to join with us in furthering this great enterprise. No nobler cause has ever been. We shall not rest until it succeeds.
The declaration above was ratified and signed by the 700 attendees at the Founding Convention of the Mars Society, held August 13-16, 1998 at the University of Colorado at Boulder. If you would like to add your name to the list of signatures, you can do so electronically by using the sign-up form on the website at www.marssociety.org.
Mars Society Special Bulletin #13 Jan. 21, 1999 Reproduce or Pass on as Desired For Further information, See our web site at www.marssociety.org Or contact email@example.com In this Issue Second International Mars Society Conference Registration Opens Mars Express Saved -- For Now Mars Society to Work with White House on Mars Millennium Project Mars Society Press Coverage Continues on Massive Scale Hakluyt Award Student Competition for 1999 Announced Executive Director's Bulletin The Latest in New Mars Mars Society Brochures and Videos Available Teacher Opportunity for Mars-related Workshop and Field Trip SECOND INTERNATIONAL MARS SOCIETY CONFERENCE REGISTRATION OPENS Registration is now open for the Second International Mars Society Convention, which will be held on the campus of the University of Colorado at Boulder, August 12-15 1999. Last year's Founding Convention drew 700 people from over 40 countries worldwide, featured close to 180 papers, and was covered extensively in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Boston Globe, ABC-Discover News, and many other leading world press outlets. This year's convention promises to be the largest and most important gathering of space pioneers in history. CALL FOR PAPERS Papers for presentation at the convention are requested dealing with all matters (science, engineering, politics, economics, and public policy) associated with the exploration and settlement of Mars. Abstracts of no more than 300 words should be sent by May 31, 1999 to: Mars Society, Box 273, Indian Hills, CO 80454. Or via e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org Conference registration fee: $140 before June 30, 1999, $180 thereafter. A special discounted fee of $50 is available for students. Those Mars Society members who have paid non-conference membership dues since August 16, 1998, may deduct that amount from their fees. Fax, mail in, and secure methods of online registration by credit card are now available. Further information is posted at www.marssociety.org MARS EXPRESS SAVED - FOR NOW The European Space Agency's Science Programme Committee (SPC) has decided unanimously to back continuation of the Mars Express program through the Phase B design effort. Following this decision, the Agency's Industrial Policy Committee has awarded the contract to develop and build the spacecraft to Matra Marconi (France). As a result, Phase B work on Mars Express commenced January 7, 1999. Commenting on the SPC's approval of Mars Express, Dr. Roger Bonnet, ESA's Scientific Programme Director stated: "Several factors prevailed which led to the unanimous vote for Mars Express. First, the science case is indisputable. The baseline payload, partly re-using some Mars 96 instruments with the addition of a sounding radar and a lander, would provide a unique tool to search for underground water and look for a possible trace of fossil life. Second, the SPC noted the important role of the mission for international collaboration: once in orbit (around Christmas 2003), Mars Express will be able to provide relay communication services to the non-ESA stations and/or rovers which would be present on the surface of Mars between 2003 and 2007. A third important element was the low cost of the mission (150 million Euros) achievable through a new and innovative approach of working with industry and through more efficient and lean management methods, as well as taking advantages of commonalties with Rosetta. In fact, Mars Express will be the cheapest ever mission to Mars and it was seen by SPC Delegations as a test case for these new methods, and for providing a good basis to lower the costs of future ESA missions." The program is still not out of the woods, however, as funds are not yet in place to enable the Phase C and D (build and flight) stages of the program. A Ministerial Meeting to discuss the ESA budget is to be held in May. This could be decisive in determining whether sufficient funds can be mustered to allow the implementation of the Mars Express mission. What needs to be done? Those wishing to insure that Mars Express moves forward need to act. Already the British and French Chapters of the Mars Society have taken action in contacting ESA and Dr. Bonnet himself directly, and between them have formulated a plan all European members and other Mars Express supporters are urged to follow: 1. Write to your ministers for science (or space, if your government has a minister for space), stating your support for Mars Express, and why you feel the mission is both valid and vital and urge them in the strongest terms to give their support to ESA's space science programme and particularly Mars Express. 2. Write to your Prime Minister / President again stating your support for Mars Express, the significance of the mission, and why you believe the mission will be of international benefit to Europe. 3. Seek to contact your local government representatives, ministers, etc., to gain their support for the mission. 4. Write polite, supportive letters to Dr. Bonnet and M. Antonio Rodata, ESA's Director General, again urging them to continue to support the mission. They can be reached at: European Space Agency 8-10 rue Mario Nikis 75738 Paris CEDEX 15 Make sure you also send a copy of any letters you send to the British Chapter of the Mars Society at: Mars Society UK 4 Chievely Court, Emerson Valley, Milton Keynes, MK4 2DD. England. Or via e-mail to email@example.com The British Chapter is compiling an archive of letters that will be put to good use in the future! MARS SOCIETY TO WORK WITH WHITE HOUSE ON MILLENIUM MARS PROJECT At a press conference at the National Air and space Museum in Washington, D.C., January 7, First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton announced the initiation of the "Mars Millennium Project," supported by NASA, the Jet Propulsion Lab, the Department of Education, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the J. Paul Getty Trust. The purpose of this project is to use the exploration of Mars as a source of inspiration for youth to engage in creative thought in the physical and social sciences and the arts. Specifically, the project challenges kids "to design a permanent community on the planet Mars in the year 2030 - a scientifically sound, livable, aesthetic environment." The Mars Society has been invited to participate in this program in an official capacity as a cooperating organization. We have accepted this invitation and, as part of our role in this program, we will be distributing copies of the Project's study guide at public events and seeking to get local school systems to implement the program in the classroom. At the January 7 Washington press conference, Hillary Clinton was introduced by Mars Society Steering Committee member and former JPL Mars program manager Donna Shirley. After the conference, Mars Society President Robert Zubrin presented the First Lady with an autographed copy of his book, "The Case for Mars." Those wishing further information on the Mars Millennium Project should contact Shelly Heitman at 310-274-8787 x150 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. MARS SOCIETY PRESS COVERAGE CONTINUES ON MASSIVE SCALE Massive press coverage of the Mars Society continues. On January 3, the Washington Times carried a story about the Mars Society's Mars Arctic Research Station (MARS). During the following week, additional stories on the MARS project were run in the Ottawa Citizen and the Vancouver Sun. On Sunday, January 10, major stories on the MARS base were also carried in the London Times and the Independent. Coverage of the MARS station also appears in a feature article in the current issue of the New Scientist. The Mars Society is also the subject of a six-page feature article in the February issue of Discover Magazine, and is the cover story of the February issue of Reason Magazine. In addition, the February issue of Popular Science has a cover story on Mars Exploration, which includes prominent mention of the Mars Society. Also, in case you missed it, the Mars Society Founding Convention was the subject of a major feature article appearing in the December issue of MIT Technology Review. All of the press coverage received to date has been highly favorable. This onslaught of press coverage is extremely useful, as it is accelerating recruitment, and fulfilling one the society's key objectives in spreading the vision of pioneering Mars among the public. In addition, it should greatly facilitate obtaining corporate sponsors for the Arctic Base project, as the amount of publicity this project has obtained clearly demonstrates that becoming a sponsor is an extremely cost-effective expenditure of advertising funds. MARS SOCIETY TO OFFER 1999 "HAKLUYT PRIZE" FOR BEST STUDENT LETTER TO WORLD LEADERS In order to stimulate useful, meritorious, and vitally important activity among young people, the Mars Society has announced that it will again award the "Hakluyt Prize" for the best letter or group of letters written by a student to world political leaders making the case for initiating a humans-to-Mars program. To be eligible, contestants must be students or cadets in secondary school or college between the ages of 12 and 22. All letters to be considered must be sent either via stamped mail and/or e-mail to relevant world leaders, such as Presidents, Prime Ministers, Science Ministers, Space Agency Administrators, and elected representatives. The more leaders reached by a given contestant, the better. Copies of the letter with a list of the addresses to which it was sent should be forwarded to email@example.com, or via stamped mail to Hakluyt Prize, Mars Society, Box 273, Indian Hills, CO 80454 USA. An English translation should be provided for letters written in a language other than English. The winner of the contest will receive a trophy and an all-expenses-paid trip to the Mars Society Second International Convention in Boulder, Colorado, this August. To be considered for this year's Hakluyt Prize, entries must be received by June 30, 1999. Last years' Hakluyt Prize was won by Adrian Hon, 16, of Liverpool, England. The Hakluyt Prize is named after Richard Hakluyt, the brilliant pamphleteer, whose writings, addressed to Queen Elizabeth I, Sir Walter Raleigh, Sir Humphrey Gilbert, Sir Francis Walsingham, and other influentials in Tudor England convinced that country's power elite to make the policy decisions that led to the establishment of the first British colonies in North America. If not for Richard Hakluyt, the United States probably would not exist. If there is to be a human civilization on Mars in the future, there needs to be another Hakluyt today. Maybe that person is someone you know. Maybe that person is you. Start writing! The future is counting on you. EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR'S REPORT The following is a personal report written by John McKnight, the Mars Society's new Executive Director. It is anticipated that such reports will be a planned feature included in future Special Bulletins. This year has started of with a whirlwind of activity and huge progress in several crucial areas for the Society. I have been requested by the Society's management to concentrate on fundraising for the Arctic Base and encouraging political action and educational activities by the membership. The Arctic Base project is zooming along, with a fundraising prospectus nearing completion and our first major donors ready to sign on. More chapters are meeting with their political representatives, including a very successful meeting by the Houston chapter with an aide to Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison. It's easy, it's fun, and it's hugely useful for the effort to get humans to Mars: I've tagged along on two meetings arranged by the Colorado chapter, and both were an exhilarating experience. All it takes is a phone call and an hour's time, and it does a world - two worlds! - of good. Next, we have a major presence planned for the National Science Teachers Association's annual convention in Boston in late March: anyone interested in working on curriculum materials or other educational projects for us to present there, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and Education Task Force chair Tom Becker at email@example.com . THE LATEST IN NEW MARS In the latest issue of the Mars Society's web magazine New Mars (http://www.newmars.com), historian Vernard Foley takes examines the question of innovation on the frontier in 'The Likely Influence of the Martian Frontier on Technological Development: Lessons from Earth." (http://www.newmars.com/features/foley.asp) Also, Julian Hiscox reports from a symposium hosted by the British Interplanetary Society on the possibility of Martian life. And be sure to take at look at 'New views of MARS -- the Mars Arctic Research Station' -- with commentary by illustrator Mike Koonce. MARS SOCIETY BROCHURES AND VIDEO TAPES AVAILABLE The Mars Society Graphics and Productions Task Force has done a magnificent job and produced 20,000 copies of a beautiful full-color, four-fold brochure delivering the message of the Mars Society. The brochure includes information about the Mars Society's purpose, our Founding Declaration, the Arctic Base, how people can get involved, and forms for registering for membership or the convention. Special thanks for the success of this project are due to Task Force leader Geoff Case, Jon Wiley who did the initial design, Gary Hollingshead who did the revisions and pre-press, and David Chamberlain, of Imagineering Learning Technologies, who oversaw the final production. Single copies of this brochure will be mailed to every dues-paying Mars Society member, along with the conference Call for Papers flyer, and membership cards (which will be useful in obtaining discounts at our soon-to-be established on-line store) within the week. In addition, the Mars Society has now mass produced copies of "Martian Society," a 22-minute video report on the Founding Convention produced and broadcast nationwide on the Science Fiction Channel. This video gives a real feel for the spirit of the Founding Convention and should serve as a great tool for recruitment. Copies of the brochure are available to anyone who wants a bundle to use to organize with at a price of $25 per hundred (postage and handling included). Orders of $50 or more will receive a free copy of the videotape as well. Send orders to: Mars Society Box 273 Indian Hills, CO 80454. TEACHER OPPORTUNITY FOR MARS-RELATED WORKSHOP AND FIELD TRIP Teachers can learn the "ins and outs" of how satellite data relating to minerals and rock types are collected from the surface of Mars ^Å taught by the scientists that are currently doing it! The ASU Mars K-12 Education Outreach Program and Arizona State University Geology Department are offering a Mars-related remote sensing workshop and field trip especially geared for 30 classroom teachers. This event will be held from March 11-13, 1999, at ASU and an Arizona desert field location. The course will be taught by Dr. Phil Christensen a proponent of connecting space scientists and educators together to create unique learning experiences. He is the Principal Investigator for the Thermal Emission Spectrometer (TES). The TES instrument is aboard the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft and is currently collecting mineralogical data about the Martian surface from orbit. Dr. Christensen has similar instruments scheduled for the orbiter and lander of the 2001 and 2003 Mars missions. For the first two days, Dr. Christensen will instruct the class in the fundamentals of remote sensing and relate the information to classroom use. He will oversee the field trip to a richly diverse geologic location: the Granite Wash Mountains. This workshop will allow participants to become familiar with thermal emission data and the methods of "ground-truthing" satellite data in the field. Teachers will also be introduced to the Pan-cam/Mini-TES technology that will be used in the 2001 and 2003 Mars missions. The final day, participants will attend the 13th semi-annual ASU Mars K-12 Education Workshop. The featured speaker will be Dr. Mike Malin, the Principal Investigator for the Mars Orbital Camera (also aboard the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft). Dr. Malin will be showing and describing fantastic new photos of the Martian surface. Dr. Christensen will also detail the latest discoveries from the Thermal Emission Spectrometer and outline what is in store for future missions. In addition, this event will also include Mars-related hands-on, classroom activities and a tour of the Mars Global Surveyor Space Flight Facility for workshop participants. Deadline for applications: February 10th, 5:00pm MST. Chosen participants will be notified no later than February 13th. $25 application fee and for chosen participants will be due by March 1, 1999. Applications or inquiries may be e-mailed, faxed, or mailed to: Sheri Klug Director, ASU Mars K-12 Education Program Arizona State University Department of Geology P.O. Box 871404 Tempe, AZ 85287-1404 (602)727-6495 (office) (602)965-1787 (fax) firstname.lastname@example.org For further information about the Mar Society, visit our website at www.marssociety.org. Inquiries should be directed to email@example.com.