To explore is an irrepressible human urge. If there is a peak on Earth, someone will try to climb it. If there is an ocean to cross, someone will sail it. If there is a hunk of solid on the other side of that ocean, someone will try to stand there. Explorers do not always come back. With current technology, we are encouraged to fantasize about the exploration of peaks, and brittle ground, and ice sheets on other planets. No doubt NASA or private agencies like Space-X could rise to the technological challenge and send an astronaut to Mars, hang the cost. But could we bring her back? Janna Levin invites her guests to consider the brazen implications of a one-way ticket to Mars.
Foundation Professor, Director, Origins Initiative; Co-Director, Cosmology Initiative; School of Earth and Space Exploration, Department of Physics; Beyond Center for Fundamental Concepts in Science, Arizona State University.
NASA Astronaut; Professor of Professional Practice, Columbia University.