Comic-Con 2018 kicked off today, July 19, 2018, in San Diego with the first of hundreds of panels on science fiction and geek culture.
In between the cosplay, diehard fans and studio screenings of new TV programming, living on Mars was the topic of a panel of big thinkers and actors on the possibility of how humans would live on the Red Planet as part of National Geographic Channel’s hybrid TV series, ‘Mars’ season 2. The panel included Leland Melvin, former NASA Astronaut Shuttle Atlantis; Dee Johnson, Showrunner, ‘Mars’ seasons 2 and Executive Producer; Stephen Petranek, author, How We Will Live On Mars; Andy Weir, author, The Martian and Artemis; Susan Wise Bauer; author, Story Of The World Series; Jeff Hephner, actor, ‘Mars’ season 2 and JiHae, actor, Season 2. The series is part drama and part unscripted documentary produced by Ron Howard and Brian Grazer of Imagine Entertainment.
Melvin, who was a mission specialist who spent 23 days in space says that science is critical to space exploration because it lets us decipher and inform the data and analysis that use on earth.
“It’s so important that we have more science, education, and knowledge, not just for scientists, exploring and going to Mars, but for making decisions in our everyday communities,” said Melvin. “Whether its something around climate change how to stop beavers making a dam that causes rivers to flood in your community, science a community thing, a humanity thing so we can have more information that can help save us all.”
Jennifer Kite-Powell is a writer who covers innovation in technology and science as it intersects with industry, culture, health, environment and mobility. You can follow her on Twitter @jennalee.