SpaceX President Predicts People on Mars This Decade, Spacecraft Soon in Space

SpaceX still sees Boots on Mars into 2030 and the rocket making its first orbital journey as soon as next month.

“We should be getting people to the surface of Mars within this decade,” Gynne Shotwell, SpaceX’s president and COO, told CNBC. “People on the moon earlier.”

The timeline repeats what company founders Elon Musk predicted in March when he said he hopes to see occupation on the red planet by 2029. At one point he had hoped to bring humans to our neighboring planet as early as 2024, but as Musk himself frequently admits, his goals tend to slip.

As for the moon, NASA has signed a deal with SpaceX to use its Starship rocket to bring Artemis astronauts to the lunar surface. We won’t see that until 2025 at the earliest.

Shotwell added that she believes a successful unmanned mission to Mars could spark enthusiasm for sending humans on routine flights.

“I think we need a big shipment to the surface of Mars and then people will start thinking about it more intensely and then I think within five or six years people will see that’s going to be a real place to go to you can walk.”

Possible launch windows for such a payload to the red planet are in late 2024 and 2026.

Shotwell also said last Thursday that Starship’s next test flight is scheduled to take place in June or July, according to Bloomberg.

Recently the The FAA pushed back its target date for completing a required environmental review for launch by the end of May. The proposed mission will see Starship and a Super Heavy Booster launch from Texas and make a short trip to orbit before landing on soft water off the coast of Hawaii. The booster, meanwhile, is said to attempt a landing on an offshore platform in the Gulf of Mexico. SpaceX President Predicts People on Mars This Decade, Spacecraft Soon in Space

Chris Barrese

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