Since it’s beginning 18 years ago SpaceX became one of the most important players in the space race. Throughout the years it accomplished many breakthroughs in space exploration, including the recent astronaut launch of Falcon 9. Elon Musk’s agency has a lot of great vision and is one of our major hopes for space exploration. Let’s discuss five, most promising of those visions.
Traveling to Mars
Traveling to another planet is a natural next step in space exploration. Elon Musk said he plans on dying on Mars, not as a result of an accident. Through years of its activity, SpaceX prepared for that step, not only by creating a detailed plan. Elon Musk’s also plans on ‘warming Mars up’ though it’s not sure what technology will be used.
The plan includes refueling the vehicle twice. First after the launch, on the Earth’s orbit, for the journey to the Red Planet. The second refuel is planned on Mars, using local resources of water and carbon dioxide. That will enable the vehicle to travel back to Earth. The company plans on putting the first human on Mars by 2024.
The Starship Vehicle
Of course, the journey to the Red Planet will never be possible without a proper vehicle. If everything goes according to plan, Starship will be able to carry 100 metric tonnes to the orbit, making it the most powerful launch vehicle ever made. The on-orbit refuel will also enable to transport to 100 tonnes directly to the Red Planet. Moreover, the use of Starship does not end on this mission.
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It will also be fully reusable for low-cost satellite delivery. The company hopes that it will enable missions of carrying to the orbit space telescopes bigger than the James Webb. Due to rapid technology and design works, the first orbital flight might even happen next year!
Private Space Service
Starship will also create a huge economic change. Elon Musk plans on creating a variety of private space services. Those include, of course, space tourism. The first private journey is planned for 2023. It will take a week, during which the passenger (Yusaku Maezawa) will fly by the moon.
The mission will help to fund further development of Starship and will be a step closer to regular space tourism. Moreover, SpaceX will provide transport of cargos, satellites, and possibly other objects to Earth’s orbit and beyond. The company hopes to create a system of services that will be used by ‘everyday people’ in the future.
Returning Humans to Lunar Mission
Humans abandoned the Moon in 1972 and no one has been to our natural satellite ever since. SpaceX wants to use the Moon as a commercial travel target and a possible location for a space base. The importance of the moon lays in its lack of atmosphere and proximity to Earth. That makes it a perfect spot for launching vehicles or a linking point between the Earth and other celestial bodies.
The planned lunar mission will take a week and it will not land on its surface. However, the mission will flyby close to our satellite’s surface, enabling its close inspection. Reusable vehicles lower the costs of space travel, so in the future visit on the Moon may become frequent.
Making Humans an Interplanetary Species
It is not a secret that SpaceX’s ultimate goal is to colonize other planets. Most of the previously discussed goals are somehow related to the dream of making humans independent from Earth. Though it may seem unachievable, for some even crazy, the company consequently plans and achieves goals necessary for it to happen.
Achieving every goal puts SpaceX one step closer to creating space colonies, even though it’s still a long way down the road. The first human city outside Earth will probably be created on Mars. We can conclude, that all of the SpaceX goals are connected with making humans a multi-planetary species with private space services available for everybody and independent from any government.