Elon Musk founded a space company 14 years ago with a primary goal in mind; starting a colony on Mars. Musk’s SpaceX has already planned to fly an unmanned spacecraft to Mars in 2018. These flights would carry on for next two year. Musk said that, if everything goes as planned, and when Earth and Mars are closest in orbit, SpaceX will begin first manned flights to Mars with the goal of landing in 2025.
In a recent interview with The Post this week, Musk shared more detail about his plans for building a colony on Mars. He clearly recognized the vast problems of getting to a planet that is, almost 140 million miles from Earth. Musk said the unmanned flights would transport science experiments and also rovers to the planet for research purposes. The required equipment would be made either by SpaceX, or other companies. The initial flights also would assist to better comprehend interplanetary navigation and permit the company to test its ability to securely land craft on Mars.
Musk said “Essentially what we’re saying is we’re establishing a cargo route to Mars. It’s a regular cargo route. You can count on it. It’s going to happen every 26 months. Like a train leaving the station. And if scientists around the world know that they can count on that, and it’s going to be inexpensive, relatively speaking compared to anything in the past, then they will plan accordingly and come up with a lot of great experiments”
NASA is currently planning its own manned missions to Mars with the goal of landing in the 2030s, but according to congress the agency must do a moon mission first.
SpaceX's 2018 flight would use its Dragon spacecraft propelled into space by Falcon Heavy, a gigantic rocket driven by 27 first-stage engines. According to SpaceX “it’s most powerful operational rocket in the world by a factor of two,”
Musk also said that he is planning to launch what the company now sometimes speak of to as the Mars Colonial Transporter, planned to bring a colony to Mars.
Musk also mentioned that he will unveil his complete plan about this in a conference in September.
Musk said ““This is going to be mind blowing. Mind blowing. It’s going to be really great.”
Musk continued “But I do want to emphasize this is not about sending a few people to Mars. It’s about having an architecture that would enable the creation of a self-sustaining city on Mars with the objective of being a multi-planet species and a true space-faring civilization and one day being out there among the stars”