> Lee Daniel Crocker wrote: ... -you can create [a Mars colony]
> from scratch in a century or two starting with, say, 30
> or 40 young, healthy, genetically diverse women and
> a big dewar of sperm....
Altho it presents some extreme difficulties, could we not start a Mars society with a single woman and a bunch of ethnically diverse frozen embryos? Could not the single crosser of interplanetary space have her birth canal surgically enlarged before launch in order to facilitate giving birth by herself after self implanting an embryo some time after it starts looking like she will survive on the surface? It appears to me that all the mission requirements scale to the size of the astronaut. Our best bet might be a single very small woman, perhaps one with no legs, whose weight might be 30 kilos or less. spike