28-11-12

Huge Mars Colony Eyed by Elon Musk













Elon Musk, the billionaire founder and CEO of the private spaceflight company SpaceX, wants to help establish a Mars colony of up to 80,000 people by ferrying explorers to the Red Planet for perhaps $500,000 a trip.

In Musk's vision, the ambitious Mars settlement program would start with a pioneering group of fewer than 10 people, who would journey to the Red Planet aboard a huge reusable rocket powered by liquid oxygen and methane. This group will begin establishing and building infrastructure on the Red Planet.

"At Mars, you can start a self-sustaining civilization and grow it into something really big," Musk told an audience at the Royal Aeronautical Society in London on Friday (Nov. 16). But first, he said, SpaceX has to design what he calls a "rapid and reusable" rocket that can land vertically. "That is the pivotal step to achieving a colony on Mars."