10 months ago
Designing buildings for Mars may seem like a far-out endeavor, but one school is aiming to bring the future some grounded practicality.
Master’s students in the architecture program at Calgary University can enroll in Mars Studio, a class on designing structures for the Red Planet.
The course explores the practical challenges faced by scientists and architects as they plan what human life will look like on Mars. Students in the Mars Studio class are treated to six guest lecturers, including a genuine NASA architect.
Over the three-month class, students design two projects. The first is a six-person settlement, which would be the initial stage of colonizing Mars. The second project is a hundred-person settlement, planned for 2050. The latter offers the challenge of predicting the design needs for a large community in space using technology that could exist several decades from now.
Once an exercise in creativity, the race to send people to the Red Planet brings a dose of reality and urgency to graduate course. NASA’s committed to sending astronauts to there by 2033, while the private company Space X is aiming for sometime closer to the end of this decade.