You may be familiar with Elon Musk as the founder of Tesla, but his latest company, SpaceX, is developing a massive rocket and capsule to transport large numbers of people and cargo to Mars with the ultimate goal of colonizing the planet. Musk recently outlined his plans on how he would be achieving his company’s goal.
Paving the Way to Mars
The company’s Mars rocket is capable of carrying 100 passengers plus cargo per voyage and they intend to fly to Mars about every 26 months when Earth and Mars are favorably aligned. Musk even went as far as to say he would like to launch the first crew as early as 2024, a schedule he said was optimistic.
No Survival Guarantee
But don’t get too excited about the possibility of a new life in Mars just yet. Musk said there would be no guarantee of survival for anyone signing up with SpaceX for the trip to Mars. “The risk of fatality will be high. There’s no way around it. Basically, are you prepared to die, and if that’s OK then you’re a candidate for going,” he said at a presentation at the International Astronautical Congress meeting in Guadalajara.
Not Exactly Cheap
Although Musk envisions humans living in a large colony on Mars and possibly terraforming the planet, another key issue is getting the cost of the journey low enough to attract customers. “You can’t create a self-sustaining civilization if the ticket price is $10 billion per person,” he said. “Our goal is to get it roughly equivalent to (the) cost of a median house in the United States, about $200,000.”