Elon Musk Says, Spaceships Will be Ready By 2019 To Send Humans To Mars

| March 12 , 2018 , 14:30 IST

SpaceX founder Elon Musk on Monday said that his timeline for sending a space vehicle to Mars could mark its first milestone early next year.

Musk said the interplanetary transport system, which includes a reusable booster, a spacecraft and a supply in orbit, will be put to the test, and there will already be "short flights" in the first half of next year.

Perhaps wary of raising expectations too much, he acknowledged that his timelines can be overly optimistic.

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The announcement comes over a month after SpaceX successfully tested its most powerful reusable rocket, the Falcon Heavy.

"I think we'll be able to do short flights, up and down flights, sometime in the first half of next year," said Musk at the South by South West festival in Austin, Texas.

In September last year, Musk said it would redirect SpaceX's efforts to build a single mass reusable transport system called BFR, which would eventually take on the role of other corporate vehicles. BFR plans to fly its first cargo mission to Mars in 2022. The ultimate goal of SpaceX is to help facilitate the creation of a human colony on the red planet

Musk said once the first BFR ship is operational, other companies and countries will follow suit to build their own interplanetary transport ships.

Musk added that a human colony on Mars would require "a tremendous amount of entrepreneurial resources" to survive.

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"The biggest thing that would be helpful is just general support and encouragement and goodwill," Musk said. "I think once we build it we'll have a point of proof something that other companies and countries can go and do. They certainly don't think it's possible, but if we do they'll up their game."

The billionaire also stated that Mars will “need everything from iron foundries to pizza joints”.

He remarked: "Mars should really have great bars...A Mars bar."