This is how you would die on every planet in the solar system

This is how you would die on every planet in the solar system

Imagining what it would be like to visit another planet has been a staple of science fiction for decades. Whether it’s here in the Solar System or elsewhere in the universe, other worlds tend to intrigue us.

However, it’s worth remembering that humans exist on Earth, and not somewhere like Mars, for a reason: it’s the only place in the universe we know of that wouldn’t kill us horribly in minutes or less .

“Humans need oxygen to breathe,” said Jennifer Glass, an associate professor in the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences and Biological Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Newsweek. “The Earth’s atmosphere today contains 20% oxygen. Without oxygen in the gas we breathe, humans die of suffocation – due to lack of oxygen – in about seven minutes.”

Without enough oxygen anywhere else in the Solar System, death would come quickly. The only difference between the planets is whether their temperatures or pressure would kill us faster.

Here’s what would happen to each planet, starting with the one closest to the sun.

Skeleton in space suit
A stock image of a skeleton in a spacesuit throwing up the peace sign. Without protection, an astronaut would quickly die on every planet in the Solar System except Earth.


The fact that Mercury is the closest planet to the sun already indicates that it would not be the most hospitable of planets. On the side of Mercury that faces the sun, temperatures soar to 800 degrees Fahrenheit as the sun blasts its nearest planet with all its might. Meanwhile, at night, temperatures would plummet to -290 F. This is because Mercury is, for all practical purposes, a vacuum and has almost no atmosphere to retain heat.

Therefore, death on the cold side would be similar to death in outer space and would probably be over in a matter of minutes. “If you died on the hot side, you would burn to death in seconds, as you suffocate and have all the water evaporate from your body,” Glass said.


Proportionally the most Earth-like planet in the Solar System, but the similarities end there. Venus’ thick atmosphere gives it a greenhouse effect that sees its surface temperature rise to 867 degrees F, according to NASA, and the thick atmosphere also means that the pressure at the surface would be lethal. Uselessly, it also has clouds of sulfuric acid.

“While you’re struggling to breathe, you’d be burned by the extreme heat and acid within seconds,” Glass said. “At least it would be a quick death, but it would be horrible.”


March It probably has the most pertinent surface conditions of anywhere in the Solar System except Earth, with temperatures reaching a pleasant 70 degrees F in the summer, though they would drop to -225 degrees F at the poles.

However, even if a human were placed at the equator in the summer, they wouldn’t last long. The atmosphere of Mars is almost pure carbon dioxide. In some ways, that would make it one of the worst planets to die on.

“If carbon dioxide builds up in our blood when a person suffocates, they experience the stressful sensation of shortness of breath before losing consciousness and then dying of suffocation,” Glass said. “If, on the other hand, his blood is diluted by breathing a gas without carbon dioxide, for example hydrogen, helium, nitrogen, methane, etc., the person will lose consciousness in a few seconds, without feeling the breath, so death it would be less painful, but they would still die within minutes from lack of oxygen.”

In short, death on Mars may be more prolonged than elsewhere in the Solar System, and potentially accompanied by extreme cold.

Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune

The gas giants of the Solar System are grouped together because the death process would be basically the same, but also variable depending on where on the planet you go since they have no surface.

Being located in the center of a gas giant means instant death that would probably be too quick to even experience. Saturn’s core, for example, is believed to be around 15,000 degrees F and the pressure at the core of jupiter it is so high that it would be like having 160,000 cars stacked on top of each other all over the body.

In the clouds it can be a slightly different experience, but with the same inevitable end. Temperatures range from -166 F on Jupiter to -330 F on Neptune.

“There are no solid solids in the gas giants, so you would simply fall through them until they crushed you under their intense pressure,” Glass said, although you would die long before you reached the core. “Their atmospheres are composed of hydrogen with some helium, methane, and water, but a minimum of carbon dioxide, so at least when you freeze to death, you’d pass out more gently, without the panic of hypercapnia due to high carbon dioxide. as on Venus and Mars.”

some moons

As an added bonus, humans would also die on every moon in the Solar System. Betül Kaçar, professor and principal scientist of the NASA Center for Early Life and Development at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, she said Newsweek that, apart from not being able to breathe, people could experience being “bathed in radiation as we cross Jupiter’s magnetic field lines” in Europa, being “frozen in a lake of methane and ethanes” in Europa. titanor being “blasted into space in an icy geyser” on Enceladus.

In short, don’t forget your space suit.

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