Our choice of a landing site will be based on numerous factors such as the relief in the area, the amount of absorbed cosmic ray, water, and information that we can gather.
Chapter 1: Geographic Data/Land
The latitude that is possible to consider is within ±30° of the equator. due to engineering constraints.
If you start with a launch vehicle, and you want to bring it down in a controlled manner, you’re going to end up operating that propulsion system in the supersonic regime at the right altitudes to give you Mars-relevant conditions.
-Shape of the landing site
The area considered should be open, flat with no high volcanic structures to make the descent easy with no high risk so in this case, we need to avoid two major areas where there two major volcanoes are located which are Tharsis and Elysium according to the map in Fig-1. The best area that will be flat and it will also provide a low altitude and more time while descending on Mars will be a low flat plain.
Here is the list of all the low flat plains on Mars:
- Acidalia Planitia
- Amazonis Planitia
- Arcadia Planitia
- Argyre Planitia
- Chryse Planitia
- Elysiym Planitia
- Eridania Planitia
- Hellas Planitia
- Isidis Planitia
- Utopia Planitia
- Meridiani Planum (Arabia Terra)
-Nearby exploration sites
The best site to land on will be near many interesting site that we can go and explore.
Chapter 2: Work
-Protection from radiation
The human body can only absorb a certain dose of cosmic rays from natural sources of radiation. The map in fig-3 shows the calculations of the skin dose equivalent for astronauts on the surface of Mars near solar minimum. Higher altitudes (such as Olympus Mons) offer less shielding from the CO2 atmosphere and lower altitudes (such as Hellas Planatia). The effective total dose has a range between 20 and 30 cSv/yr as a function of altitude for the static atmospheric high-density CO2 model used here.
The areas of Mars expected to have the lowest levels of cosmic radiation are where the elevation is lowest because those areas have more atmosphere above them to block out some of the radiation.
According to fig-4 the best spots to choose are those of the less amount of cosmic rays the acceptable dose range, in general, is in the dark blue and blue colours from 10 to 20 rem/yr which are the blue areas and those are low flat plains.
-Protection from storms
Dust storms on Mars happen normally during the southern summer season when the planet is nearer to the Sun along its curved circle. The upgraded sunlight based enlightenment causes more grounded temperature contrasts, with the subsequent air developments all the more promptly lifting dust particles from the surface – some of which measure up to about 0.01 mm in size.
Chapter 3: Resources and Research Interests/Discover
-Water and Ice
This rainbow-coloured map shows underground water ice on Mars. Cool colours are closer to the surface than warm colours; black zones indicate areas where a spacecraft would sink into fine dust; the outlined box represents the ideal region to send astronauts for them to dig up water ice.
When it comes to the northern hemisphere of Mars, the Arcadia Planitia region is a desirable target. There is plenty of water ice there, widespread and accessible under only 30 cm or so of regolith.
The data acquired from (Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) camera on Mars Odyssey suggest a trove of water ice throughout the Martian poles and mid-latitudes. Fig-5 reveals particularly shallow deposits that future mission planners may want to study further.
Colonists in Arcadia Planitia will not only have access to abundant, accessible underground water ice, they might also have a great view of Olympus Mons, which is almost 22km high.
We need water to produce fuel and propellant This happens according to Sabatier equation
A genuine way to have propellant using in-situ resources:
CH4 ⟶ C + 2 H2 ;
2 CH4 ⟶ C2H2 + 3 H2.
-Minerals, Astrobiology, Forms of life
Prior to the Mars Exploration Rovers, the closest evidence we had of past life is the Alan Hills 84001 meteorite. Based on chemical composition, this meteorite is known to have its origins from Mars. What prompted excitement with possible life was a close examination of this meteorite:
Mars, similar to our Earth, has had a functioning and changed geologic history; be that as it may, its surface and geology have been substantially less influenced by erosional forms due to its moderately thin atmosphere. During its earliest geological period, the Noachian Mars surface has been under accretion and heavy impact cratering. Mars’ surface is divided into lowland and highland regions.
Around a large portion of the planet comprises intensely cratered good country territory, discovered essentially in the southern side of the equator. The other half, which is for the most part in the north, contains more youthful, daintily cratered volcanic fields at a normal height around 5 kilometres lower than the good countries. Recall that we saw a comparative example on Earth, the Moon, and Venus. A land division into more established good countries and more youthful swamp fields are by all accounts normal for all the earthbound planets aside from Mercury.
Lying over the north-south division of Mars is an elevated landmass the size of North America. This is the 10-kilometre-high Tharsis swell, a volcanic locale delegated by four extraordinary volcanoes that ascend still higher into the martian sky.
The main surface features of Mars are :
- dark slope streaks,
- dust devil tracks,
- sand dunes,
- Medusae Fossae Formation,
- fretted terrain,
- scalloped topography,
- chaos terrain,
- ancient rivers,
- pedestal craters,
- brain terrain,
- ring mold craters.
The best location to land on will be the one close to river channels because of the amount of information that we can extract from there and also near Dark slope streaks are most common in the equatorial regions of Mars, particularly in Tharsis, Arabia Terra, and Amazonis Planitia. It has been suggested that streaks could form when accumulations of dry ice start subliming right after sunrise. Nighttime CO2 frost is widespread in low latitudes so we will probably find water there.