Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Michelle Kuchera
Since the crew of Apollo 11 first landed on the moon in 1969, humanity has sought to further extend its reach to other celestial bodies. By far the most commonly thought of target for such an expedition is Mars. In recent years the goal of sending a manned mission to Mars has seemed much closer to reality thanks to advancements not only by NASA and other federal space agencies around the globe, but also private space agencies such as Space-X. One question still remains, though. What exactly would a manned mission to Mars have to look like? Therefore, the goal of this project is to help answer this question by simulating the physics behind such a mission. This will be done by simulating first the motion of the planets, Earth and Mars, using Newton’s Laws and Fourth Order Runge-Kutta, then incorporating the same methods to simulate visually and mathematically the movement of a manned command module.