Copyright © 2006 by James C. McLane III. Published by The Mars Society with permission.
There’s a distressing contradiction between commonly held expectations and public enthusiasm for sending humans to Mars and the daunting constraints that oppose such a proposition. We know how to get into space. We reached the Moon nearly 40 years ago. But now, we hesitate to fully commit to the next big step, a human trip to Mars. For a century, ideas about exploring the Red Planet have abounded, but even for our current spacefaring generation all these concepts remain impractical and unachievable. Nevertheless, there is one way that we might yet witness this feat. This essay describes that single option, a program concept I call the “Spirit of the Lone Eagle”.
This paper appeared July 31, 2006 in the on-line internet journal “The Space Review” http://www.thespacereview.com/ .
The article may be found at http://www.thespacereview.com/article/669/1/