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UK: Man uses laser pointer to "improve" Mars' atmosphere so he can claim it as his own

A 50-year-old doctor regularly aims a powerful laser pointer at Mars in an effort to slightly warm the atmosphere. This would allow him to claim that he has "improved" the Martian climate, which in turn under the 1967 Outer Space Treaty would give him claim to the planet even though he has not set foot there.

Dr. Philip Davies does not think he will substantially cause a greenhouse effect on Mars. His effort is primarily to point out shortcomings in the wording of the treaty, that in turn could lead to revisions. Davies' goal is to prevent militarization of Mars or other off-Earth bodies.

To help publicize his effort, he is claiming he owns Mars and is selling plots of Martian land, with a few acres going for one U.S. cent.

Mars laser pointer
The laser pointer can be seen on the left side of Dr. Davies' telescope. At right is the beam it projects into the sky. From the look of the laser, it's output power is probably in the low Class 4 range, around 500 to 1000 milliwatts (1/2 to 1 watt).

From News.com.au. Davies' efforts have been the subject of numerous news stories such as from the Daily Mail. Do an internet search for "Philip Davies laser Mars" to find the latest on his efforts.