These Stunning Designs Show What Our Future on Mars Might Look Like
Max Rymsha, from the Ukraine, was one of the winners in the HP Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge. They won for their piece "Between the Red Mountains" as part of the Rendering challenge.
Credit: Courtesy of HP, Inc.

A recent contest challenged participants to create utopian designs of future human Mars settlements, and their creations are stunning.

In the HP Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge, over 87,000 people from all over the world flexed their creative muscles to design the perfect colony on the Red Planet. Last summer, when HP launched the challenge, the participants started working on their designs, and the winners were announced on Aug. 14.

This challenge wasn't just about creating a pretty, futuristic-looking, idealistic Martian colony. Indeed, the designs also had to show how the settlements would support 1 million colonists. The surface of the Red Planet is harsh, with an extremely thin atmosphere, intense radiation and dust storms that occasionally envelop the planet. [Mars Ice Home: A Red Planet Colony Concept in Pictures]

The participants' designs were judged on originality, creativity, rendering quality and Mars physics (or how the design would realistically work on the actual Martian surface), HP included in a statement. The designs must take into account atmospheric conditions, gravity, the soil, the surface terrain, radiation, drinking water, and air, the statement added. 

Open to the public, this challenge had three competitions: Concept, 3D Modeling and Rendering. The participants could submit their designs to one of five categories in either architecture/civil engineering or vehicles/mechanical engineering: still rendering (GPU rendered), still rendering (CPU rendered), animated rendering (GPU rendered), animated rendering (CPU rendered), and virtual-reality or real-time executable. [How Living on Mars Could Challenge Colonists (Infographic)]

You can learn more about the challenge here.

Check out some of the winning designs:

Jorge Moreno Fierro, from Colombia, was one of the winners in the HP Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge. They won "Innovation in Design" for their BIO SYSTEM as part of the Conceptual Design challenge.
Jorge Moreno Fierro, from Colombia, was one of the winners in the HP Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge. They won "Innovation in Design" for their BIO SYSTEM as part of the Conceptual Design challenge.
Credit: Courtesy of HP, Inc.
Rustam Shaikhlislamov, from Russia, was one of the winners in the HP Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge. They won for their Long Range Universal Platform as part of the MARS Multi-utility Vehicle as part of the 3D Modeling Challenge.
Rustam Shaikhlislamov, from Russia, was one of the winners in the HP Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge. They won for their Long Range Universal Platform as part of the MARS Multi-utility Vehicle as part of the 3D Modeling Challenge.
Credit: Courtesy of HP, Inc.
Xabier Albizu, from Spain, was one of the winners in the HP Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge. They won for their MARS Multi-utility Vehicle as part of the Conceptual Design challenge.
Xabier Albizu, from Spain, was one of the winners in the HP Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge. They won for their MARS Multi-utility Vehicle as part of the Conceptual Design challenge.
Credit: Courtesy of HP, Inc.
Bijay Balia Hembram, from India, was one of the winners in the HP Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge. They won for their piece "Martian Hybrid Power Plant" as part of the Rendering challenge.
Bijay Balia Hembram, from India, was one of the winners in the HP Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge. They won for their piece "Martian Hybrid Power Plant" as part of the Rendering challenge.
Credit: Courtesy of HP, Inc.
Bijay Balia Hembram, from India, was one of the winners in the HP Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge. They won for their piece "Martian Power Generating Machines" as part of the Rendering challenge.
Bijay Balia Hembram, from India, was one of the winners in the HP Mars Home Planet Rendering Challenge. They won for their piece "Martian Power Generating Machines" as part of the Rendering challenge.
Credit: Courtesy of HP, Inc.

Email Chelsea Gohd at cgohd@space.com or follow her @chelsea_gohd. Follow us @Spacedotcom, Facebook and Google+. Original article on Space.com.