Particle Regeneration explores an innovative, yet contrarian strategy for Martian habitation and expansion of scientific knowledge. Martian environmental conditions are significantly complex, and apart from the more known challenges such as; gravity, air pressure, air density, radiation, and temperature, planetary size Martian dust storms prove to be the biggest threat to human habitation. Particle Regeneration not only provides a method of harnessing Martian dust storms to enable sustained human habitation, but also leverages two resources essential for human needs – energy and water; and ultimately serves as a scientific tool allowing for atmospheric research, land preservation, and supervision on surrounding Martian landscape – all achievable with a vertical approach.
Martian dust storms can engulf up to a volume of 20km from the surface of the planet, and with Martian dust particles being 1/10th the size of dust particles on Earth, the possibility of harnessing solar power is essentially impossible. More importantly, Martian dust storms hold high levels of electro-static charge due to the multiple grain collisions in the dust-laden atmosphere. With advances in technology, leveraging the electro-static charges of the particles via the creation of electro-magnetic fields, would enable significant control of the dust storms. Particle Regeneration would take the most hazardous material and phenomenon on the planet of Mars – dust and dust storms – as the core design strategy for life on mars.
In addition to controlling the dust storms, harnessing the electrical energy proves to be a primary energy resource along with water, extracted via penetrating the various ice sheets and ice patches located in the mantle of the planet. Therefore, to channel both energy sources, verticality as a functional need proves essential to a sustained habitation strategy.
Particle Regeneration examines how a vertical community could function sustainably on Mars, ensuring a phased approach tailored to strategic expansion plans. Each complete tower consists of 4 Core Modules sent from Earth, containing the technology needed to create further habitable spaces. These modules can be automatically constructed, de-constructed and transported. The BaseModule_01 would penetrate the surface of the planet and be used primarily for energy storage and surface research. A complete tower of 1km would allow a community to live sustainably in a vertical environment, protected from the hazardous Martian conditions. Each tower can be strategically placed in areas of the planet with large sources of ice sheets or locations near dust storms, to maximize the resource allocation. Verticality also allows humanity to further explore our understanding of the Martian atmospheric layers, preservation of unexplored land, and visual connection for the supervision of surrounding landscapes to enhance our knowledge of the red planet.
Designing settlements on Mars requires a new vernacular of architecture, with a ‘live off the land’ ideology for a sustainable future using local materials. We hope the contrarian philosophy of regenerating Martian dust particles to humanity’s advantage aids in the on-going global challenge of investigating how humans can inhabit Mars in the foreseeable future. ‘Form follows Environment’ aims to be the underlining thesis of Particle Regeneration.