In a recent address at Starbase, Elon Musk (CEO of SpaceX) provided insights into the state of the private spaceflight giant. Musk, while speaking to his employees, highlighted SpaceX’s remarkable achievement of completing a record 96 space missions in 2023. He also explains how we need to become a multi planetary species, to guarantee survival for the human race.
Elon Musk envisions a moon base as a crucial step before venturing further into space, with Mars as the next destination for human colonization. While acknowledging the potential for exploration beyond the International Space Station, Musk remains focused on the immediate goals of lunar and Martian settlements.
In a post on X (formerly Twitter), Musk also asserted, “Humanity should have a moon base, cities on Mars, and be out there among the stars.” This statement aligns with Musk’s longstanding ambition to propel human exploration and habitation beyond our planet.
At an average distance of 140 million miles, Mars is one of Earth’s closest habitable neighbors. Mars is about half again as far from the Sun as Earth is, so it still has decent sunlight. It is a little cold, but we can warm it up. Its atmosphere is primarily CO2 with some nitrogen and argon and a few other trace elements, which means that we can grow plants on Mars just by compressing the atmosphere. Gravity on Mars is about 38% of that of Earth, so you would be able to lift heavy things and bound around. Furthermore, the day is remarkably close to that of Earth.
What is Starbase?
Located in Cameron County, Texas near the Gulf of Mexico, Starbase is one of four active launch sites in the United States operated by SpaceX. It is the first optimized for Starship, which can transport satellites, payloads, crew, and cargo to a variety of orbits and Earth, Lunar, or Martian landing sites.
SpaceX’s flight control center is located in Hawthorne, California, near the company’s headquarters. It is responsible for monitoring and controlling SpaceX’s various space missions, including launches and landings of its rockets and spacecraft.
And NASA, are they even still alive?
According to their own statement, NASA is advancing many technologies to send astronauts to Mars as early as the 2030s as well.
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“You want to wake up in the morning and think the future is going to be great – and that’s what being a spacefaring civilization is all about. It’s about believing in the future and thinking that the future will be better than the past. And I can’t think of anything more exciting than going out there and being among the stars.”