News Column

Humans 'Could Be On Mars In A Decade'

June 18, 2014

The founder of a private space transport company says humans could be on Mars in the next 10 years.

SpaceX's Elon Musk said he is hopeful of shuttling people tp the red planet in between 10-12 years.

And he said that in the long term a "self-sustaining city" could be created there.

SpaceX was founded by Mr Musk in 2002 and designs, builds and launches spacecrafts into low-Earth orbit.

He told CNBC: "I'm hopeful that the first people could be taken to Mars in 10 to 12 years, I think it's certainly possible for that to occur.

"But the thing that matters long term is to have a self-sustaining city on Mars, to make life multiplanetary."

SpaceX's Dragon spacecrafts have been used for regular cargo deliveries to the ISS since October 2012, but there is now increased competition in the space travel arena.

Major firms such as Boeing are competing for Nasa contracts, as well as smaller companies such as Sierra Nevada Corporation.

SpaceX unveiled the Dragon V2 spacecraft last month, and hopes to win a Nasa contract to ferry astronauts to and from space.

But Mr Musk said that missing out on the contract would not be the end of SpaceX.

He said: "It's possible that we may not win the commercial crew contract. We'll do our best to continue on our own, with our own money."

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Source: Sky News (UK)

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