Living on Mars

This course invites students from the three ENAC sections (AR,GC,SIE) to work together on a construction project on the planet Mars. In this interdisciplinary approach, they will tackle issues that they will have to analyze, interpret, integrate and represent.

Course book




Planning and building with limited local resources


The ENAC “Inhabiting Mars” UE offers students from the three ENAC sections the opportunity to pool their skills to “project together” a habitat on the planet Mars. Above all, it is a pedagogical framework that enables students from the three sections to apply their know-how in an interdisciplinary project.

Why Mars?

While the idea of colonizing Mars may seem futuristic and utopian, it provides an excellent framework for students to tackle today’s issues together.

Imagining a building on Mars requires us to solve problems that are similar to those we’d have to tackle on Earth, when building to meet increasingly stringent sustainability requirements. However, the extreme conditions on Mars preclude the use of conventional answers, and require us to take the issues back to basics. This is the only way to come up with innovative solutions adapted to the situation. In order to position ourselves to utilize the skills of the ENAC faculty, the students are asked to design a Martian base for around 100 people. This presupposes that we are no longer in a pioneer-explorer scenario, but rather in a permanent colonization and construction logic using mainly local resources. This situation can only be envisaged in the next 30 to 50 years (or more).