Last week, SpaceX’s reusable Falcon-9 rocket continued to make history by successfully landing on a “drone” landing platform in the Pacific Ocean. Below is a video of the landing. Elon Musk and his SpaceX group have proven that reusable rockets are viable, bringing down the cost of orbital device deployment, and even ISS (International Space Station) resupply missions.
Falcon-9 Three Camera view of landing on “drone pad”
Elon Musk has designs on a Mars mission, utilizing SpaceX’s Dragon rocket engine to travel to the red planet, and usher in a new era of space exploration, and possible commercial tourism.
Dragon is a free-flying spacecraft designed to deliver both cargo and people to orbiting destinations. Dragon made history in 2012 when it became the first commercial spacecraft in history to deliver cargo to the International Space Station and safely return cargo to Earth, a feat previously achieved only by governments. It is the only spacecraft currently flying that is capable of returning significant amounts of cargo to Earth. Currently Dragon carries cargo to space, but it was designed from the beginning to carry humans. Under an agreement with NASA, SpaceX is now developing the refinements that will enable Dragon to fly crew. Dragon’s first manned test flight is expected to take place in 2-3 years.
According to Observer.com, Elon Musk will be making some intriguing announcements regarding his plans to have a City on Mars. While no specifics are given, he said
“I think it’s going to sound pretty crazy,” Musk said when referring to his Mars plans. “So it should at least be entertaining.”
If Elon Musk is good for anything, it’s grandiose and entertaining talks, but you can’t argue the fact that he sets out to at least attempt to make good on his claims. Could we see a manned flight to Mars during our lifetime? Mr. Musk thinks so.