Thursday, April 28, 2011

SpaceX says they can put a man on Mars in 10?

From the Wall Street Journal via Boing Boing I read that Elon Musk of SpaceX who says: We Can Put A Man On Mars In 10 Years or worst case, 15 to 20. NASA? Nope, SpaceX that's who.

From the WSJ article:
  • SpaceX, is aiming to send the first man to space in three years. But, he said, “we’re going all the way to Mars.”
It seems NASA wants to play too by awarding SpaceX $75 million in funding to aid in developing commercial spacecraft.
  • SpaceX (already) has NASA contracts to transport cargo to and from the international space station, and its hoping that its Falcon family of rockets will carry NASA astronauts to the space station, too.
  • Musk said in the WSJ interview. “I’d like to see a self-sustaining base on Mars.”
Full WSJ article and interview video


Dave Tackett said...

I would love to see it (more than almost anything that I can imagine), but I'm extremely skeptical about them actually doing it.

I don't see a private company, even a partially government funded one, succeeding in such an enormous endeavor without a huge likely return on their investment.

Beam Me Up said...

You know, my first instinct is to agree because we have been lulled into believing only the government can do the big projects. Now the Moon or Mars, yeah, major difficult, but so was crossing the largest bodies of water on Earth a few hundred years ago, stringing railroad tracks across the United States less than 200 years or entering an environment far more dangerous than outer space, the deepest place in the ocean just a little over half a decade ago and all of these had little or no government support. Will it be expensive to do? Yes, but is it possible to do without government intervention...I think so.... SpaceX? I really don't know if they could, but NASA seems to like them for their go-to people so there might be something there. I just know the writing is on the wall and I would be very surprised if NASA without a mandate, being able to even get back to the moon.

Charles said...

What did early man have to draw him across the waters to another shore? A way to make a profit. Discover that on mars and we will be there.

Beam Me Up said...

I agree as well as not being taxed right out of existence almost immediately. The moon is an excellent example. As soon as it was found that it could be reached, it was put out of reach. Yeah there is a fortune of Helium 3 there and technology aside, as long as the moon remains hands off, no one is really going to want to go there. MOON may have been stretching it some but just showing how the harvesting could be accomplished (sans clones) was an interesting thought experiment. Now if Mars has an equally interesting resource, there is hope for an ongoing presence. Fingers crossed