Cities Skylines: Mars
Project Mars is the name of Mars colonization efforts commenced and maintained by WOK Industries. It was the first major extra-terrestrial settlement project, succeeding in maintaining a fixed presence on Mars as early as 2056, growing throughout the next two decades into a complex system of mining colonies, habitation domes, and dozens of smaller outposts. Marketed as a Utopia for modern man, Mars has opened up a whole new opportunity for revenue streams. WOK Industries, being it's major shareholder and investor, offers affordable transportation for selected citizens from Earth to the red planet, which many see as the only possible escape from Earth ravaged by the climate change and associated societal effects.
- 1 Background
- 2 Preparations
- 3 Interplanetary Travel
- 4 Domes and Stations
- 4.1 Design and Construction
- 4.2 List of Domes
- 5 Colony Politics
- 6 Legacy
World in Crisis
With a population of 11 billion and a nearly exhausted reserves of fossils fuels, never mind the ever worsening climate, the world seemed to be headed towards disaster. Decades of poor decisions, simple-minded and shortsighted politics, have left the Earth of 2030 unprepared for what was always going to happen.
Global Economic and Climate Collapse
Exactly forty years ago, the year 2036 brought the first truly world changing climate events. Because of flooding, hurricanes/cyclones, and incredibly intense heat waves and droughts the majority of third world countries were completely decimated and often suffered heavy casualties, ranging into the millions over time. First world countries fared slightly better, as they had advanced technology and infrastructure in place to protect them from a slow descent into hell. After the initial shock of the Earth's environment changing, food became a large problem, as with the droughts, heat waves, and flooding, many crops and livestock had been killed off, crippling the majority of food production. The first obvious result was an immediate economic recession. As prices soared and incomes became irrelevant, many less developed regions of the world have attempted to switch to a simpler but less volatile system of bartering, sometimes successfully.
Riots and Radicalization
Soon after, civil unrest began to grow among all classes of all nationalities around the world. Protests began to break out across the world like wildfires, be it because of the dire financial situation, natural disasters, or lack of food and other supplies. Instead of uniting people, these riots further stratified the society, with the generous help of social and mass media. Over the following months, societies separated and radicalized in any political direction that promised to solve the issues everyone was facing. Populists took power on promises of instant remedies, solving nothing but pushing radicals even further. Many nations at this time decided to shut their borders, international cooperation was halted out of fear of competition for resources. Dozens of small and several large military conflicts broke out in the regions of the middle east, Siberia, as well as Central and South America. Authoritarian nations such as China and North Korea held the nations in tight control, managing to maintain some control and order, but bleeding thousands of lives in the background every day due to starvation, pollution, and other related causes. The richest of countries revisited cold war doomsday scenarios, with the richest searching for an escape from the society's problems. Extra-terrestrial colonization came back as an alternative that many considered outlandish, except for one corporation.
Corporations Rise to the Occasion
With the rising social tension, many governments which promised quick solutions began outsourcing various tasks to expensive but far more effective corporations. One of these corporations was WOK Industries, which started out as (TBA), but soon grew to become the largest subcontractor of the CCP. Witnessing its ruthless efficiency in delivering security services, healthcare, but also infrastructural solutions, foreign nations began to reach out to WOK Industries, which soon established itself in more than fifty major countries, including twelve states of the USA. These corporations soon became economically larger subjects than many small nations, maintaining control over large regions in different countries both in administration and militarily.
Extra-Terrestrial Colonization Concepts
Seeing the current conditions on the Earth, many of the Earth's wealthiest individuals and groups were seeking alternatives to the volatile, prone to revolt city centers of first world countries. Secluded locations deep within uninhabited territories were torn up my mother nature and weren't viable anymore. Living in bunker-like homes was the path many took, but no one chose, hence the search was diverted elsewhere.
First mentions of possible private colonization efforts outside of the Earth appeared in the early 2040s. Humans first looked towards Moon, for its relative proximity to Earth, which meant it was much easier to transport materials to it than to other planets. The other two alternatives were Venus and Mars, for their atmospheric and orbital properties, respectively. WOK Industries finally dedicated itself in creating a colony on one of the three bodies.
The Moon was considered first and the simplest alternative to living on Earth. Although it does not have an atmosphere it is the closest celestial body meaning that to shuttle personnel and supplies to its surface is less costly than to any other planet. The travel time is also much shorter, measured in only days compared to months that it takes to reach Mars and or Venus. The idea was eventually discarded since although it was close, it was limited in resources, and most importantly, it lacked water.
Venus was the second option considered for colonization, in a manner previously unseen. Instead of establishing a base on the surface of the planet, a floating colony was suggested. This was the most plausible solution, due to the extremely hostile conditions on the surface of Venus. Although there is water in the atmosphere, the project was considered far too technologically advanced to be considered for a large colony.
Mars was the third and the most serious candidate for colonization. It has water reserves under its surface, it has ore deposits, and martian regolith is suitable for the construction of living structures, as well as industrial tools and systems. On top of that, the utilization of Phobos as part of the Skyhook network was instrumental in the selection of Mars. However, as Mars doesn't have a magnetic field, the surface is exposed to deadly solar and background radiation, and its atmosphere is near negligible. None the less, Mars was selected as the most suitable planet for colonization, and the preparations commenced.
In 2034, the Russian space agency, Roskosmos has merged with another government-owned Russian company, the United Aircraft Corporation, forming Rosaviakosmos. Less then a year following the merger, Rosaviakosmos was privatized due to financial reasons. Soon after, the company began searching for new directions it could develop itself, in order to become financially viable again. True turnaround came in 2040, when WOK Industries requested a study be made into the possibility of cheap interplanetary travel for future colonization efforts.
Development of Skyhook
Several concepts of large volume interplanetary travel were presented to WOK Industries, including the Skyhook, which was ultimately chosen as the best option available. Although the concept seemed outlandish to many, Rosaviakosmos engineers delivered a concept study to WOK Industries mere three weeks later, with the project name РоМeTC (Pоссийская Mежпланетная Tранспортная Cистема). RoMeTC would have a skyhook placed in Low Earth Orbit, a satellite with a counterweight and a tether that would reach down to upper atmosphere to grab spacecraft and throw them out of Earth's sphere of influence. Reluctantly, WOK accepted the somewhat nationalist name, which later become the symbol of the next two decades. It was decided to establish one Skyhook on earth reaching into low earth orbit, and another on Mars, which would be connected to the closer of its moons, Phobos.
Development of Graphene fiber composites allowed for the construction to begin almost immediately. First tests were made later that year, where the tethers were thoroughly tested on ground in a series of tension tests. Two years later, in 2042, the first satellite with a tether system was sent into the orbit. The test was a failure, and the tether broke when the satellite control system hit gimbal lock and tumbled into the atmosphere, burning up. Multiple experiments were performed, in total 12 satellites were launched, until 2047, when the actual Skyhook was launched into orbit. The mission was a partial success, the drag was much larger than expected due to unforeseen aerodynamic effects. This was resolved with an attachment, launched two months later, which included a powerful ion engine and two large xenon tanks, capable of balancing out the drag on the satellite.
Development of Nuclear Propulsion
While working on the Skyhook, it was clear that it alone could not deliver payloads to Mars at all times. With the changing relative positions of the two planets, the spacecraft needed to either accelerate or decelerate after leaving Earth's sphere of influence while keeping in mind strict weight limits. Every gram of fuel was accounted for, as it meant that less payload, fewer passengers and or supplies could be delivered to Mars. Known for its extremely high specific impulse (but also dubious environmental effects), nuclear propulsion was chosen to deliver the necessary DeltaV. All associated research was completed in the State Central Navy Testing Range near Nyonoksa, a site familiar with similar projects. It took only four years from the first prototypes to complete self-sufficient nuclear rocket engines. The engines were first tested on an old TU-160 strategic bomber and later launched to be tested in High Earth Orbit. Following successful tests in both environments, Rosaviakosmos developed a series of 14 shuttlecraft equipped with these engines by the end of 2048.
Dome Habitat Experiments
Having found a contractor for the development of the inter-planetary supply chain to Mars, WOK Industries was finalizing its colony design. Together with WOK Industries, several international corporations have dedicated themselves to the project, such as the South African Vapour Fibre, Mexican Roca Roja Incorporated, Japanese Happīrokku, but also the Chinese corporation Hóngxīng Technologies. Each was given a respective role in the colony design, according to their specialization, such as water treatment, software solutions, mining operations, etc.
The design of the colony was rather straightforward. Rather than terraforming the entire planet, a colossal dome of steel and composite glass would be built over a suitable crater and allowing for a manageable environment. The crater would provide several benefits, namely, easy access to the different ores found on Mars. However, this design was only simple in theory, but not in practice, hence WOK Industries decided to build a series of domes on Earth first, in varying environments, from Oceania to Siberia. In total, there would be 11 scaled down Domes constructed on Earth before the first began construction on Mars in 2055.
Simulating Mars Environment
The environment of Mars is challenging to say the least. Temperatures range from 293K to 120K, the atmosphere is nearly negligible, unable to shield the surface from UV radiation. There is nearly no noticeable magnetic field on Mars, due to a stationary core, far colder than that of Earth. While most of the testing domes were placed in normal conditions, four were placed in the coldest locations available, in Alaska and Siberia. These domes were testing systems of air filtration, water purification, recycling, oxygen production, systems not directly exposed to the outer elements. Two extra domes were constructed with another dome around them, to test the true conditions of Mars. The outer dome sealed off the Earth environment, and maintained a near-vacuum with the second, inner dome, with a temperature varying around 200K.
Dome X12 Air Circulation Failure
Dome X12 was the first earth-based testing dome constructed already after the colonization of Mars began. It was supposed to bring major changes to the design, which would lead to the currently largest dome, the Harmony Station, with a completely new air filtration system, and an experimental machinery that would be capable of changing heavy water into regular, non-toxic water. However, just hours after the start of the test, the new air filtration system started to develop faults. First it was suggested it could be a software error, so the control systems were rebuilt and upgraded. The real fault though was in a valve component that was responsible for allowing excess CO2 from inside the dome to be expelled into the outer environment of Mars. With the valve not working, the system wasn't able to get rid of all the CO2 and it steadily rose, ultimately resulting in a failure. The air filtration system was never redesigned, since the flaw was so substantial a new full design would be cheaper. These issues were fixed with the creation of the caretaker, a complex low-level artificial intelligence in charge of complex life support systems.
Remote Construction Trials
Since the domes were such complex structures, they would be built over a long time period. It was decided that the simplest option was to sent out a series of drones and remotely operating machinery that would start and complete large part of the construction before the first settlers arrived. Part of this process would have been gathering martian regolith as well as different ores, that would be used to forge the structural beams of the dome, as well as gather materials necessary for forming the large translucent panels that cover the dome. To test this ability, tests were made in deserts in New Mexico, and one even on a WOK Industries - owned outpost on the moon.
Program Propagation and Commercialization
With the design complete and construction under way, WOK Industries had to gather personnel for the colony, and make it financially viable. The colony wasn't just supposed to provide an escape for the wealthy, but it was also going to have to generate revenue to keep itself afloat and WOK Industries in charge. The already mentioned class of the elites from earth formed the first form of income. For this reason, each residence Dome was separated into the upper and the lower levels.
The upper levels of the colony where they would reside were reminiscent of an oasis. Marketed as the first other-worldly wonder, WOK Industries promised the most luxurious apartments, shops, parks, and many other amenities, including spas, restaurants, and theaters. For the selected few, this was a chance at a second life, far from Earth's problems, a new frontier to discover, and conquer. However, the costs of these luxuries would only partially be covered by what the residents had to pay. Another source of income would be scientific research, where the scientists and researchers would share the upper levels with the elites, although their stay would be paid for by other large corporations and government organizations.
The lower levels were the largest source of income, and also the biggest cost saving effort made by WOK Industries in the entire project. Densely packed large populations of people gathered from all over the Earth would be promised a better life on Mars, a chance to escape the more and more problematic Earth. For many, it was a way to escape not only the larger issues that were threatening the world, but also their personal issues, leaving their past behind. However, upon coming to Mars, it became very clear what kind of life was awaiting them, and even worse, that it would be near impossible to get out of it alive. The reason being that the lower levels were working manual jobs only, almost purely for food rations and practically no money. The main source of income are mining operations outside of the main dome, where the lower level personnel would work for years upon years without end, gathering the materials that are needed back on earth or anywhere else in the solar system.
The Problematic of Interplanetary Travel
While the design and construction of the domes presented one major challenge, the travel between Mars, Earth, and other extra-terrestrial colonies, presented another. As planets move around the Sun, they move at different velocities, creating a system where the optimal path between two planets changes with time, as they change their position. Transfer times range from a few months to more than a year, depending on the relative position of the planets. Furthermore, the requirements for the initial velocity and delta-V necessary to perform the transfer also changes with varying relative positions of the planets. This creates a great issue when the goal is to supply a colony on another planet as efficiently as possible.
There are two most suitable relative positions of Earth and Mars for interplanetary travel, first is when Mars and Earth are in opposition, and a shuttle can be launched on a Hohmann transfer orbit. Although this type of transfer orbit is the most efficient, requiring the least amount of delta-V, it also has a long orbital period, resulting in a transfer time too long for manned spaceflight. However, it is suitable, together with spiral transfer orbits, for the transport of time-independent cargo, such as raw materials, water, etc. Second suitable relative position is when Earth and Mars are in conjunction. In such position, the shortest possible transfer orbit is available, however it does require orders of magnitude larger delta-V values.
To best understand the problematic of delta-V budgets, it helps to consider Newton's second law of motion:
eq 4.1: F = m a
where: a = dV / dt
eq: 4.2 dV = F / m * dt
In other words, the acceleration of a body is equal to the instantaneous change in velocity in an infinitesimal amount of time. While it might seem simple enough to rephrase the equation in terms of dV, mass of the spacecraft, choose a suitable engine and calculate burn time dt, this is not possible, due to changing mass. The variable 'm' in this case changes with each instance dt, meaning that the amount of dV achieved in every infinitesimal time segment is different from the one before it. However, the equation still provides useful insight. Namely, that the change in velocity is proportional to the Force applied on the body, divided by its mass, multiplied by the time the force is being applied for. This leads to an important conclusion. Given a set of spacecraft with varying mass, but identical engines and same amount of fuel (meaning same burn time dt, same F), the lightest spacecraft will achieve the highest dV, and the heaviest spacecraft will achieve the lowest dV. If a spacecraft with double the mass needs to achieve the same dV, it will need more than double the fuel to do so.
Since the delta-V of a given transfer orbit is fixed, it makes sense that the heaviest spacecraft need to take the transfer orbit with the lowest delta-V requirement, otherwise the fuel requirements will grow exponentially, to the point where the spacecraft won't be able to achieve the orbit even if it has the engines running constantly. This also suggests that the aforementioned short orbits with high delta-V requirements are reserved only for the lightest of spacecraft. The implications of these statements can be observed everywhere in the interplanetary transport system as well as the daily life on Mars.
The two aforementioned relative positions of Earth and Mars, when they are in opposite positions and in conjunction, occur only once every two years, due to the relative orbital velocity of both planets. If one year the planets are in conjunction, the next year they will be on the exact opposite sides of the solar system. Since these positions provide the most optimal transfer orbits for their respective purposes, they are also the most sought after transfer windows. However, it is impossible to send and receive hundreds of spacecraft at once, hence the flights are scattered around these two dates following the normal standard distribution.
Skyhook, technology brought to the world by WOK Industries and Rosaviakosmos, is the technological advancement that made Mars colonization truly possible, especially at this scale. The underlying principle of the Skyhook is a system of a satellite with a tether, and a balance weight. [insert illustration!] Two main types of skyhook can be distinguished, the stationary and the rotating skyhook.
In the case of the rotating type, the entire system rotates as it orbits a body, allowing the end of the tether to reach closer to the surface at regular intervals. This is most suitable for planets with thicker atmosphere, where a tether constantly immersed the atmosphere would create heating and structural issues, as well as impose significant drag on the main satellite. When the tether is closest to the surface, a spacecraft approaches it and connects to it. As the rotation continues, the tether brings the spacecraft out of atmosphere into orbit..
In the case of the stationary type, the satellite is most often positioned at geo-stationary orbit, where the tether remains stationary relative to the surface of the body. On celestial bodies with negligible atmospheres it is possible for the satellite to orbit outside of the geo-stationary orbit, in which case the tether has a velocity relative to the surface. In both cases, a stationary skyhook works similar to a detached space elevator. A spacecraft docks with the end of the tether, and is then brought up along the tether past the satellite into orbit.
Both of these systems expend potential, kinetic, or rotational energy in the process of bringing spacecraft into orbit. This is remedied in two distinct method. Firstly, spacecraft returning to a given celestial body uses the skyhook to slow itself down, passing some if not most of its energy to the skyhook in the process. Secondly, each tether carrying satellite is equiped with ion and mono-propellant thrusters to stabilize its orbit, or to adjust it as necessary (whether that means lowering or increasing altitude)
Earth Skyhook System
The Earth Skyhook System (ESS) is the first skyhook designed and constructed. It was designed, manufactured, and entered service with Rosaviakosmos, as part of the planned РоМeTC(Pоссийская Mежпланетная Tранспортная Cистема)(Russian Interplanetary Transport System), commissioned partly by WOK Industries. It was launched into orbit in 2047, and entered service a year later.
The ESS is a general spinning skyhook, with five main components.
- The body of the satellite (A)
- Propulsion module (B)
- The tether (C)
- The counter-weight (D)
- the connector between tether and spacecraft (E)
As the ESS rotates, the tip of its tether periodically dips in and out of Earth's upper atmosphere. It is important to time the launch of a shuttle well, since the time the tether is submerged in atmosphere is minimal. At its lowest point, the tether connects with the shuttle, locking in place, and as it continues its rotation, it brings the shuttle out of the atmosphere to orbit. During this maneuver, the satellite performs small adjustments burns to keep itself in optimal orbit. When the tether reaches the position furthest from earth, it disconnects from the shuttle.
Over the years, several skyhooks were launched into the orbit, and are listed under names ESS_1 to ESS_8. These skyhooks are on independent orbits, since their orbit dictates the orbit they give the shuttle. When a skyhook is inactive, it retracts its tether somewhat, so that the end of the tether doesn't reach bellow the karman line, to avoid unnecessary drag, and preserve energy in orbit.
[additional information tba]
Mars-Phobos Skyhook System
Compared to the ESS, the Mars-Phobos Skyhook System (MaPSS), is of the stationary type, and much larger in scale. It is based on the low-orbit moon Phobos, from which a tether is lowered into low martian atmosphere at around 15km above the surface. The atmosphere on Mars is so thin, that at this altitude it is outright negligible. Spacecraft approaching Mars will first match orbit with phobos, then get carried by the skyhook down to Martian atmosphere, from where they will glide down and land on a nearby spaceport. Spacecraft leaving mars will be propelled to match the velocity of the moving skyhook by a powerful electromagnetic catapult, not too dissimilar from a railgun.
Spacecraft and Launchers
As part of the RoMeTS, series of spacecraft and launchers were designed to work with the ESS and MaSS skyhook systems. The spacecraft used for manned flights and cargo flights are substantially different. In the case of manned flight, time is the main limiting factor. The personnel has to be provided with food and water throughout the flight, increasing costs and weight of the payload with every day that is spent in space. Manned flights are therefore the shortest possible, performed with medium-sized shuttles that begin their transfer the moment they are disconnected from the skyhook. In comparison, cargo flights are not time limited in most cases, and can be planned years ahead with transfer orbit efficiency in mind. In practice, shuttles similar to those used to transport personnel bring cargo containers to orbit, where large inter-planetary cargo haulers are stationed. These cargo haulers are then dispatched once every two years in a large group on the Hohmann transfer orbit, since it is the most efficient option. Nearly a year later, they arrive to their target destination, and are unloaded and loaded again in the following months, waiting for their transfer window to open again.
Due to combined high efficiency and high thrust requirement for interplanetary flight, conventional liquid-fuel rocket engines and ion engines were both regarded as inadequate. Instead, nuclear engines were used, where liquid methane is heated using a molten salt nuclear reactor. As it expands, it is accelerated through a convergent-divergent nozzle, providing thrust. This system provides thrust in the range of dozens of kN, while maintaining extremely high specific impulse. Since it is heavier than most conventional systems, it is only used for interplanetary transfer flights.
To supply the nuclear engines of all shuttles and cargo haulers that perform interplanetary flights throughout the solar system, methane is produced in large not only on Earth, but also on Mars. It comes as a byproduct of the organic waste recycling systems, and in small part from mining operations. It is cleaned and condensed into liquid, sealed underground near spaceports.
Domes and Stations
Design and Construction
Every dome from the ten that have been constructed, or are being constructed at the moment, has a different design and is constructed in a different manner, to meet its appointed task exactly and efficiently. Mining domes are equipped differently than habitation domes, research domes, or dome X1 which is of undisclosed nature. However, there are characteristics that all domes share, including the basic life support systems, and approach to material management, but also the general structure and construction of the dome itself. The domes are varying in sizes, from diameter of a few hundred meters, to diameters over two kilometers, such as the latest dome, currently under construction by WOK Industries, Harmony Station. In general, habitation domes are the largest, while the research and mining domes tend to be smaller, due to large portion of their systems being under ground, and lower necessity for more natural conditions, necessary in habitation domes.
The general structure of the dome is composed of titanium beams and a patented translucent material, nature of which WOK Industries keeps an industrial secret. All the materials necessary for the basic construction of the dome itself can be found in the martian regolith itself, or in ore deposits under the surface. This allows WOK Industries to dispatch dozens of drones with mostly pre-programmed behavior. Following land surveys, ores are mined, smelted, and the support structure is forged, as the drones move onto the construction of the large, glass-looking translucent panels. First the ground is prepared in the areas that will become the basis of the dome, then the construction begins, completed only 7-24 months, depending on the size of the dome. Afterwards, the drones begin adjusting the ground inside the dome, and first life support systems are shipped in together with the first dome personnel, composed of engineers and scientists in charge of the dome construction. Over the following months and years, the domes are equipped with large air filtration systems, water recycling plants, organic waste recycling systems, as well as all the other equipment necessary based on the task of the individual domes.
Life Support Systems
The life support systems in the domes are very complex, and split into multiple systems, each with a set of subsystems. It is worth noting that their roles quite often overlap, and influence each other. Furthermore, many systems present in the larger habitation domes are not present in this list, including redundant and security subsystems, or systems specific to the transportation networks present in different domes. An example of such system is a hyperloop pressurization system, but also the spaceport disinfection system and many others.
The most important systems and their subsystems are listed below.
- Atmospheric Control System
- Air Filtering/Recycling Subsystem
- CO2 Scrubbing Subsystem
- Humidity Control Subsystem
- Solid Particle Filtration Subsystem
- Mars-Dome Atmospheric Control Subsystem
- Ventilation Valve Subsystem
- Dome Pressurization Subsystem
- Air Filtering/Recycling Subsystem
- Temperature Control System
- Dome Radiation Shield Subsystem
- Water Treatment System
- Acidity Control Subsystem
- Sediment Filtration Subsystem
- Organic Filtration Subsystem
- Waste Management System
- Organic Waste Management Subsystem
- Inorganic Waste Management Subsystem
- Toxic Waste Management Subsystem
Many materials are scarce on Mars, including drinking water, but especially all forms of food, and hence material management is crucial for long term colonization of Mars. All organic matter and waste is recycled, and all that can be used is reused, even though it would be financially wasteful on Earth, it is not on Mars. Since shipments can take up to a year to arrive to the domes, most domes are built to be either fully self-reliant (laboratory food production, etc.), or have stocked supplies and materials for a year of production and maintenance. Most products and components are also designed with this problematic in mind. Polymers are either self-healing, or thermoplastic, so if they are destroyed they can be molten down and reshaped into a new product. A lot of metals are actually present on Mars, so those do not present as much of an issue. Water is mined at ice caps and shipped with hyperloop or road trains across the planet's surface to the colonies and outposts. Since water is reused and barely any is wasted, once a certain amount of water is present in a dome, not much more has to be supplied on a regular basis. Nonetheless, most domes keep a supply of water much higher than the current necessary amount.
List of Domes
The following is the list of all the domes currently present on Mars that were constructed and are maintained by WOK Industries. Small stations, outposts, and other colonies are not listed here. For the dome shown in the YouTube series from CityWokCityWall, refer to Outpost 9, Harmony Station]. The domes are listed in the chronological order that they were constructed in, with the notable exception of outpost X1, codename Nibiru, which was constructed somewhere between the second and seventh dome.
Outpost 0 is the first dome built by WOK Industries on Mars, and also the smallest. While it served the role of a proof of concept, it was also the first mining dome. It is positioned near the north pole, and mines various ore, but mostly underground ice. The outpost is also equipped to filter perchlorates out of the water, and to store it for future domes.
Outpost 1 (New Hope)
New Hope is the first habitation and research dome built, and as such has a large spaceport, with an electromagnetic catapult system capable of launching shuttles directly to the Mars Skyhook System. It is positioned much closer to the equator than Outpost 0, to ease the load on temperature management systems. Nonetheless, it is still connected to Outpost 0, first through remotely controlled road trains, and after several years, with a direct hyperloop connection capable of transporting both personnel and cargo.
Outpost 2 (Pioneer Dome)
Pioneer Dome is the second smallest dome constructed by WOK Industries, and it is geared towards research and scientific exploration. Situated on the edge of a medium-sized crater, it focuses on material science, geological exploration, and mars geography. Furthermore, it is equipped with a system of large deep space telescopes and systems to observe and study space radiation and far-away bodies, unobstructed by Earth's thick atmosphere.
Outpost #3, located underneath the Martian surface, is the first major mining outpost on Mars, taking advantage of the abundance of magnesium, aluminum, titanium, and iron. It supplied construction of most domes built after Outpost 4, and manufactures most vehicles, including the aerial tramways, hyperloop capsules and components, as well as road trains.
Outpost 4 (The Hub)
The Hub is a dome that possesses a considerably larger industrial ability than other domes, and as such it had less room for other services, but after the implementation of hydroponics in 2071, it is self sufficient as well.
Outpost 5 (Refuge)
Refuge, the first dome meant to support a population without the help of Earth utilized a closed hydroponics system, which unfortunately failed.
Outpost 6 ()
Outpost 6 is the second mining outpost on Mars, however it is equipped with better access to other colonies
Outpost 7 (New Ontario)
New Ontario was the first self-sufficient dome, with a fully operational hydroponics system, sizable mining operations, as well as machines capable of extracting Mars's ice.
Outpost 8 (Utopia)
Utopia is the second latest dome, serving as the current the capital of Mars, being completely self sustaining, possessing a large spaceport. Utopia also houses the majority of the governing body of Mars.
Outpost 9 (Harmony Station)
Harmony Station is the latest dome, currently under construction.
Outpost X1 (Nibiru)
Nibiru is a research outpost located under ground near the north pole of Mars. The nature of its operations is classified.
All ten domes currently present on Mars were designed, constructed, and are maintained and controlled solely by WOK Industries and its board of investors, following a structure similar to large company management. The Project is overseen by the board, which currently resides in Outpost 8, the Utopia, but will be moved to Harmony Stations when it is complete. The board makes general decision about the future of the project, following directives sent from WOK Industries HQ in Shenzen, China. The decisions that the board makes are distributed to the administrators of the respective domes, which are fully responsible for management and profitability of their respective domes. The administrators then distribute tasks to various departments present in their colonies. Examples of such departments may be the Department of Mining Operations, or the Department of Inter-Dome Transport. The departments employ the majority of Mars colony population, be it mining, or engineering. The exceptions to this are the highest elites that came to Mars to escape Earth, and scientists which come from different contractors and corporations.
Policing and Services
Every service present in Mars colonies that is legal is provided by WOK Industries or one of its subcontractors. From food stations on the lower levels of mining domes to the spas on the top of habitation domes, all is managed by WOK Industries. Carefully selected, managed, and controlled, services allow WOK Industries to shape the minds of the people, and maintain stable behavior in all personnel, to ensure peaceful and efficient cohabitation between all classes. It also allows WOK Industries to maintain a stable level of quality that the customers deserve and demand, without relying on external resources. WOK Industries does not tolerate illegal services provided by non-company personnel, as this could cause issues in a system as strained as a dome in the hostile Mars environment.
Also policing is provided by a private security group, partly owned by WOK Industries, called the Steiner-Lavalle group. An Earth born business originating in Germany, the Steiner-Lavalle group is similar in function and organization to groups like Blackwater (nowadays known as Academi) and G4S, the 'SL Group' provides PMC & cash-transit services on Earth, provides pilots and maintenance crew for the policing helicopters, as well as recruiting veterans of conflicts who have recently left Earth to work in the SWAT and High-Risk Security teams. The High-Risk Security teams handle guarding highly sensitive areas like the spaceport and the central control areas of the colony's air and water supply and recycling systems.
Colonization of Venus
During the colonization of Mars, new projects of extra-terrestrial habitation appeared. In 2082, 25 years after the first dome has been constructed, a colonization mission is sent out to Venus. While the surface of Venus presents an extremely challenging environment, its atmosphere is habitable. A system of large airships, floating at altitude of approximately 55-60km, is supports a permanent scientific personnel from 5 - 25 persons. With a strong pressure gradient relative to altitude on Venus, the airships are largely stable, able to remain in the atmosphere for several years. One of the main concerns with the project was the presence of sulfuric acid in all layers of the atmosphere, however, all exposed surfaces of airships and solar panels, as well as spacesuits are covered with a layer of teflon-FEP compound (teflon - fluorinated ethylene propene), which was shown to be resistant to this kind of environment already seven decades earlier, in a NASA study.