Mars is within reach. The fourth planet from the sun, the Red Planet, is a potential new frontier for humanity. It is the nearest body in the solar system known to possess all the mineral resources necessary to sustain a permanent human presence. It has landscapes billions of years old that can shed light on the early history of the earth and the solar system. Understanding of its climatic history will help scientists understand the operation of the earth's climate. Mars is the next most likely place in the solar system where life may once or may still exist, the discovery of which would offer deep insights into the origins of life and the biological sciences.
In the last decade, major strides toward feasible, affordable human missions have been made and the question is no longer, “Can humans go?” but “When will humans go?”.
The Mars Society NZ Chapter is based on the founding principles of the Mars Society, based in the USA and, as such, our mission and goals closely mirror those of the Mars Society.
The purpose of the Mars Society NZ Chapter is to educate the public about, and encourage exploration and settlement of, the planet Mars. This will be done by:
1.Broad public outreach and education to instill the vision of pioneering Mars.
2.Support of more aggressive government funded Mars exploration programs.
3.Promote the conducting of Mars exploration on a private basis.
4.Encourage NZ participation in Mars exploration through education, industry, government and individuals.
New Zealand is a great nation of explorers. We arrived on these shores after setting out on a path of finding new territories. Exploring is in our genes, in the genes of all people who ended up here. New Zealand carries a most amazing history ever written. The history of going beyond limits and creating landmarks.
Our vision is to have groups of talented and dedicated New Zealanders conduct comparative research and test surface exploration strategies & technologies in renowned Mars analogue locations, such as MDRS. This will help position NZ for participation in the eventual establishment of a human presence on Mars.