During a Q&A at the SXSW festival in Austin, Texas, SpaceX founder, Elon Musk, said that his company will have Mars spaceships capable of short flights by the first half of next year. However, Mr. Musk admitted that his timelines were known to be a little optimistic.
“I think we’ll be able to do short flights, up and down flights, sometime in the first half of next year,” he told an audience at the South by South West festival.
The SpaceX founder also said that it was of utmost importance that humans reached Mars before the next world war.
According to Musk, a Mars colony would reduce the chance of an extended new Dark Age if a nuclear war were to wipe out life on Earth.
While addressing the company’s plans to colonize the Red Planet, Musk was not entirely sure that Mars will serve as a beacon for the elite but rather will be akin to the early days of the American expansion. However, this time the new frontier will be red.
Musk expects that the batch of people who will colonize Mars will face dangers similar to those encountered by Antarctic explorers.
“Difficult, dangerous, good chance you’ll die. Excitement for those who survive. The kind of thing.” Musk said.
The Tesla Motors, SpaceX, and Boring Company founder described his long-term plan to put 1 million people on Mars as to give humanity a second chance in case of a nuclear war wipes out the human race on Earth.
To give life another chance on another world, Musk said that he prefers to get the Mars colony up and running before World War III erupts on our planet. According to Musk, “it’s unlikely we will never have another world war”.
While Elon Musk is already dreaming of a future amongst the stars, SpaceX has yet to detail exactly how Mars colonists will survive for months or years in the harsh environment.
The SpaceX founder, however, theorized how a Mars society would look like. After joking that he should have the title of “emperor”, Musk said that the people living on the Red Planet would follow a direct democracy instead of a system of government used in the US.
Therefore, the Mars society would most likely employ a representative democracy where elected officials represent groups of people. Musk expects that people should be allowed to vote directly on issues and that the laws put in place are short and easy to understand.
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