SpaceX CEO Elon Musk wants people to travel to Mars for as little as $200,000 a person.
How SpaceX plans to offer travel to Mars
Musk told the International Astronautical Congress his plan at a meeting in Mexico Tuesday.
SpaceX has yet to ferry an astronaut to the International Space Station. SpaceX is also still isolating the issue with a helium system breach that led to the explosive loss of a Falcon 9 and its payload earlier this month. However, that didn’t stop Musk from announcing an ambitious plan for the colonization of Mars.
“One path is that we stay on Earth forever, and there will be some extinction species. The other is to become an interplanetary species,” Musk said.
Musk has said he intends to beat NASA’s goal of sending astronauts to Mars in the 2030s by a decade.
Musk’s announcement comes on the heels of another major announcement from Blue Origin about the “New Glen.” It’s a reusable rocket designed to launch satellites and people from Cape Canaveral.
“You’ve got NASA pursuing its goals. You have the commercial sector coming in, bringing speed and innovation and sustainability, and it’s an exciting time and Florida is smack dab in the middle of it,” said Dale Ketcham, of Space Florida.
Under the SpaceX plan, the journey to Mars would begin at the Kennedy Space Center. Musk said key requirements to make all of this a reality will include reusability, refilling in orbit, propellant production on Mars and choosing the right propellant.
“Forty to 100 years to have a self-sustaining community on Mars,” Musk said.