Elon Musk, the well-known inventor and business magnate, has been a loyal crusader against climate change. As the CEO of Tesla Motors, the electric car company, Elon Musk is leading the way in reducing greenhouse gas emissions by manufacturing electric vehicles and power trains whose carbon emission levels are significantly lower than the carbon footprint of conventional cars.
Even though his claim of manufacturing an authentic “green vehicle” has been challenged, Elon Musk is carrying on his mission to save the planet by creating solutions that will help humans in the event of an apocalypse. The inventor believes that the time will come when humanity is on the brink of extinction due to various calamitous events like nuclear war, climate change, or an asteroid collision.
Though he’s a non-believer of doomsday prophecies, the business magnate predicts there’s a strong possibility that all humanity will be wiped out due to a doomsday event. Believing that expanding our human footprint in outer space is the best strategy for surviving an apocalypse, Elon Musk has embarked on a mission to transport humans to Mars and colonize the red planet. According to Foreign Policy, Musk commented that it’s time to come up with different solutions to help humanity survive a doomsday event.
“Either we’re going to create simulations that are indistinguishable from reality or civilization will cease to exist. Those are the two options.”
Elon Musk is not the only prominent personality who’s keen to help humans colonize Mars. President Barack Obama recently called upon Americans to find ways to transport humans to Mars. Musk might be the right person to fulfill President Obama’s vision because he’s also the CEO of SpaceX, the manufacturer of space transport systems.
Apart from Elon Musk, evangelists like Sam Altman, the CEO of Y Combinator, have also thrown their support behind the idea of colonizing the galaxy as a means of increasing our preparedness for surviving a doomsday event. Speaking at the International Aeronautical Congress, Musk revealed that he already has plans to transport humans to Mars in a phased approach.
Initially, his SpaceX aims to send a manned crew to Mars as a pilot test; then, after achieving success in the first phase, SpaceX will transport scores of humans who wish to travel to Mars. According to High Snobiety, each spaceship will be equipped with rocket boosters and fuel tanks that will be reused 1000 times and 100 times respectively.
In a single trip lasting 80 days, each spaceship will have the capacity to transport 450 metric tons of cargo and 100 passengers. The inventor’s plan, which is based on Battlestar Galactica, stipulates that each spaceship should be re-used 12 times.
However, Elon Musk will need to address some financial challenges before his Mars colonization project takes off; because, according to Forbes, Josh Boehm, a former SpaceX employee, revealed that the cost factor might prove to be the main deterrent in the execution of this project.
“We have the technology to send people to Mars — the bottleneck at the moment is the cost, which stems from a few issues mainly relating to reusability and fueling.”
It’s believed, though, that Musk’s team could well achieve a major technological breakthrough by designing a fully reusable rocket system. Additionally, fuel costs could be managed by relying on a fuel known as deep-cryo methalox (CH₄/O₂).
This is because it’s not only cost-effective; it can be manufactured on Mars because the Red Planet is abundant with ice and carbon dioxide; which are the fuel’s two main ingredients. In this way, Elon Musk can overcome both challenges – refueling in space and manufacturing fuel on Mars.
[Featured Image by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images]