News Local Cyprus chapter of Mars Society established

Cyprus chapter of Mars Society established

Cyprus, through the Cyprus Space Exploration Organisation (CSEO), has become a member of the international organisation Mars Society, which aims to promote the exploration and colonization of planet Mars.

The two organisations concluded an agreement through which the Cypriot chapter of the Mars Society is founded, which aims to drive Mars related research domestically and in cooperation with other nations internationally.  Mars Society Cyprus’ website is  www.marssociety.cy.

CSEO’s consortium is currently conducting R&D on Mars related instrumentation in cooperation with a number of institutions around the world.

Mars is the fourth planet in our solar system. NASA plans to send the first humans to Mars in the late 2030s. Long-term plans are to create a human colony on the red planet, making human kind a multi-planetary species.

CSEO President George Danos told CNA that the agreement further enhances the international competitiveness of Cyprus in an important technological field, by building a high-profile network of partners.

President of the CSEO International Council Professor Marcello Coradini, renowned top ESA/NASA scientist, has welcomed the agreement saying that all humans, hence all nations, have a right and an obligation to participate to the new explorations.

“For no country it is never too late to get involved in the most fantastic endeavour: the exploration of Mars and one day its colonization. A first small step, but full of profound meaning, is for Cyprus to join the Mars Society, a world-wide arena of visionaries and lovers of the Red Planet. Only benefits can spring out from participating to the Mars Society: science, technology, adventure, philosophy and courage to dream characterize all the members of the Society. Cyprus certainly is not missing any of those! Godspeed Cyprus, go to Mars!” he said in a message to be found on youtu.be/ICdqXm8lAS8

In a previous interview with CNA, Coradini said that Mars is the ultimate goal, the only planet in our solar system where we can imagine humanity creating a new society.

CSEO’s involvement in space exploration and especially as regards Mars has set solid foundations in recent years and could bring an added value to the Mars Society.

Top scientists from around the world who study the upper atmosphere of Mars have decided that Cyprus’ capital, Nicosia, will become their permanent venue for the meetings they hold every two years.

The scientists, members of the Mars Upper Atmosphere Network (MUAN), held a meeting in Nicosia two years ago during which they discussed about international co-operation for future exploration missions to Mars. Their meeting was hosted by CSEO as part of CSEO`s ongoing efforts to develop the sector on the island.

During their conference in Cyprus, they decided that Nicosia will become their permanent venue for the meetings they hold every two years.

NASA Chief Scientist Dr James Green, who participated in the conference, has told CNA, that in our life time we will answer the question if we are alone in the cosmos, noting that the next 30 to 40 years will be very exciting in terms of space exploration.

Dr Green said that humanity will soon return to the moon, thus paving the way for the first humans to be sent to Mars by the end of the 2030s. “It is in our genes to explore,” he said.

He also pointed out that Cyprus has a lot to offer as regards space exploration and noted the recent success stories of the Cypriot teams at the International NASA Space Apps Challenge competition.

CSEO members are also involved in space exploration. Dr Constantinos Charalambous a Cypriot planetary scientist and research member of CSEO is working with NASA on its InSight mission on Mars. The Cypriot scientist was given by NASA the opportunity to name two rocks on the red planet, which he has honoured with his birth roots by selecting the names “moutti” (nose) and “zavos” (askew, pointing at an angle) from the Cypriot dialect.

According to its website, the Mars Society is the world’s largest and most influential space advocacy organization dedicated to the human exploration and settlement of the planet Mars. Established by Dr. Robert Zubrin and others in 1998, the group works to educate the public, the media and the government on the benefits of exploring Mars and creating a permanent human presence on the Red Planet.

In order to accomplish this, the organization actively seeks to organize public outreach with the aim of fostering a deep interest in Mars,promote broad international support for government-funded Mars research and exploration, and advocate the establishment of commercial space ventures that will help achieve Mars exploration and settlement.

It notes that among planetary bodies in our solar system, Mars is singular in that it possesses all the raw materials required to support not only life, but a new branch of human civilization.  This uniqueness is illustrated most clearly if we contrast Mars with the Earth`s Moon, the most frequently cited alternative location for extraterrestrial human colonization.

The Cyprus Space Exploration Organisation is the official representative of Cyprus to the world`s leading space organisations:
the International Astronomical Union (IAU), International Committee on Space Research (COSPAR), the International Astronautical Federation (IAF), the Copernicus Academy Network of EU Commission, as a Founding Member, the Moon Village Association (MVA).

(Cyprus News Agency)

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