Design a Mars station

Design a Mars station

Pencil and paper
Using this Resource
Connecting to the Curriculum
Marking Student Responses
Further Resources
This task is about using information to design a space station.
Your company is going to build a station on Mars for people to live and work in.
Read the facts about Mars and use them to help design the station.
Remember your station must protect people from the conditions on Mars and have somewhere for space craft to land.
You may need to write about why you have chosen parts of your station.

Facts about Mars

  • On Mars, the day temperature can get to +17°C, but at night can go down to -143°C.
  • Mars has high winds and dust storms.
  • The surface of Mars is like a big desert.
  • The air on Mars is made up of gases, mainly carbon dioxide (CO2), that people cannot live in.
  • The gravity on Mars is much less (only one-third) that of Earth.

MARS STATION (Remember to label the parts of your Mars station)
Task administration: 
This task can be completed with pencil and paper.
Coloured pencils; books or websites about Mars.
Description of task: 
Task: Design a station on Mars. Assessment focus: problem solving to meet human needs in a different environment.
Curriculum Links: 
Science capabilities
The capabilities focus is brought about by the conversations you have and the questions you ask.
Capability: Interpret representations
Scientists represent their ideas in a variety of ways, including models, graphs, charts, diagrams and written texts. This resource provides opportunities to discuss how to change text into a visual representation.
Science capabilities: 
a) Look for features that meet special conditions on Mars, e.g.,

  • a place for growing plants to provide oxygen or an oxygen producing "machine" of some type.
  • air-sealed or strong walls for protection from the atmosphere or weather conditions/a wind break of some type.
  • insulated walls for protection from the temperature changes/a heating mechanism of some type.
  • a power generator of some type, e.g., solar power.
  • a means of storing/making water.
  • Other useful features, e.g., a way of accommodating for low gravity, satellite disks for communication, a place for growing plants for food, etc.