STATES CHRONICLE – Yesterday, September 27th, Elon Musk announced the details of his Mars colonization plans during a SpaceX live conference. According to the billionaire entrepreneur, in about fifty to one hundred years, the Martian colony should be harboring around one million colonists.
During the 67th edition of the International Astronautical Congress that took place in Guadalajara on Tuesday, September 27th, the CEO of SpaceX announced that the company is preparing for the Martian Mission that will kick off in 2018 when the first spacecraft will leave towards the Red Planet.
There and Back Again, a Scientist’s Tale by Elon Musk
Up until now, everybody suspected that, given our current technology, colonists would sign up for a one-way trip. However, Musk shattered that myth when he declared that the International Transport System would be making back and forth trips, granting the colonists the possibility of changing their mind about the Red Planet.
Reusability is the core concept of the entire mission. SpaceX plans on designing the ITS’s Raptor engines and landing gears in such a way that the spaceship will be able to make regular trips, once every 26 months to be more precise.
The Lord of the Fuel
When the ITS lands on Mars with the first 100 colonists, they will start building a solar-powered power plant that will produce the necessary amounts of oxygen and methane that are required for the Raptor engines.
After that, the spaceship will return to Earth where an additional one hundred individuals will prepare to leave towards our neighboring planet.
By building a fuel factory on Mars and ensuring that the spacecraft will have enough juice to return to Earth, Musk managed to reduce the costs of colonizing the planet from about $10 million to $200,000 for a single individual.
Every detail of the plans that Musk presented was carefully planned and calculated. From what the scientist explained, in order to make sure that the spacecraft will have enough fuel to reach the Red Planet, it will first depart our planet carrying the passengers and enough fuel to get into orbit and back again.
After that, it will make several more trips from the surface to the orbit and back until the spacecraft is fully loaded, and all the cargo is on board.
On paper, Mars should be fully colonized in less than a century. But would you do it? Would you move to an alien planet?
Image source: Flickr