Elon Musk revealed SpaceX plans to colonize Mars

© AP Photo / Ringo H. W. Sun, entrepreneur, inventor and investor Elon MuskElon Musk revealed SpaceX plans to colonize Mars© AP Photo / Ringo H. W. Chiu

Elon Musk, founder of SpaceX, spoke in detail about the plans for the colonization of Mars and the construction of an independent city on its surface, published an article in the scientific journal New Space.

«There are a few things Musk omits or misses in his article. For example, we must first wait for the first results of the mission «Eczemas-2020» and to ensure that life on Mars before we start to pollute it with their waste. In addition, the Mask does not take into account the main problem of the Mars – low surface temperatures and their rapid changes. El «city» Mask will require astronomical amounts of energy,» — said in his blog Andrew Coates (Andrew Coates), astronomer from University College London.

At the end of September this year, Elon Musk spoke about ambitious plans to colonize the red planet, in which he plans to create super-heavy rocket, and an entire fleet of thousands of reusable interplanetary ships, which by the end of the century will take on Mars, about a million people.

The main goal of this entire process, the definition of the Mask is creating on this planet independent of the Earth of the Autonomous city-«millionaire» to provide themselves with the necessities of life and will be a full society, not inferior to the community of people on Earth.

Their plans for the transformation of man into «space» steps to implement them, an American businessman introduced to the public in peer-reviewed scientific journal.

Why Mars? According to Mask, the Red planet is and will be the only option for «extensions» of humanity for several reasons – it is a lot of resources, there is an atmosphere, water, and in General, Mars is more like Earth than the Moon or other close to us planets of the Solar system.


The main instrument for the implementation of the plans Mask is cheaper space flights. According to the head of SpaceX, the value of output of goods into orbit must be reduced by about fifty thousand times before the construction of the «cities» on Mars will be possible.

Depreciation will require the establishment of several key space technologies that today do not exist or exist in embryonic form. The first of these is the reuse of upper stages of rockets and fuel.

To implement this, in turn, need the technology of refueling in orbit, a special engine capable of operating on fuels that can be produced on Earth and on Mars, and the technology take-off and soft landing on the Martian surface.

This fuel, according to the Mask, will be the methane molecules which can be produced from water and carbon dioxide in the Martian atmosphere, and the oxygen generated as a by-product of its production, can be used as the oxidant.

To use such fuel and oxidant Musk plans to use special tanks made of intertwined carbon nanotubes, are now created in laboratories SpaceX. These tanks will supply new engines from the Raptor, a record power, a battery which is installed on each ship of the colonists. Tests of this engine, according to the head space start-up has already begun in the autumn of last year.

Will there be life on Mars?

The colonists themselves, according to the Mask needs to go to Mars not as the construction of ships, and almost simultaneously, forming a kind of «colonial fleet» of several hundred passenger «astroliner». This will save a lot of money on their startup and will allow the uninterrupted supply of the base.

Estimated Mask, if all of his ideas for reducing the cost of the flight will be implemented in the coming years, the ticket for this «liner» will cost about 140 thousand dollars. The entrepreneur intends to invest in this programme all the money that SpaceX is making money on contracts with NASA and commercial launches.

Says Coates, the first part of the plans for the Mask is quite feasible, nothing prevents SpaceX to create a «Shuttle», capable of flying to Mars and back. On the other hand, the construction of a permanent colony, a restoration of the atmosphere of Mars and travel to more distant planets and moons, such as Enceladus or Jupiter, the astronomer finds the fruits of imagination Mask, which is unlikely to execute in the near future.

In addition, the existence of a city on Mars, in addition to problems with heating, will prevent that the surface of the red planet is not protected from bombardment by cosmic rays and solar wind streams. Accordingly, a long stay on Mars, or just flying to it can either kill a person or cause cancer and other serious health problems. Therefore, according to Coates, the idea of the Mask still remain a dream to strive for, but which could hardly be implemented in the foreseeable future.