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The journey takes close to 6 years and in the opening scene, we see that the infrastructure is huge and well established, the open pit mine is gigantic and everything on the base seems to be in order. Is there anything in the move that tells us when the first humans (or even machines from Earth) landed on Pandora?

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The Avatar Wiki's timeline — a coherent history of the Avatar universe compiled from the film and various published sources — tells us that:

  • Pandora was discovered by human astronomers some time between 2050 and 2077
  • The first remotely-controlled rovers landed on Pandora in 2084
  • Dr. Grace Augustine arrived on Pandora in 2139 (possibly the first human visitor, but others may have preceded her)
  • Augustine founded a school for educating Na'vi about human language and culture in 2142
  • The first security compound / military base was built on Pandora in 2147
  • Jake Sully left Earth for Pandora in 2148
  • He arrived there in 2154, six years later

Therefore, humans were on Pandora for at least 15 years prior to Sully's arrival, and human survey devices were there 70 years prior to his arrival.

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