Companies are not competing to discover who will be the first to establish a colony on Mars. But those seeking adventure should start saving up now, because a ticket to the planet could cost up to $500,000 a trip.
Elon Musk, the co-founder of Pay Pal and Tesla Motors, has announced plans to offer private rides to space. Now the founder and CEO of SpaceX, Musk has created a new vision that involves beginning a new Mars colony.
The first step of the SpaceX plan is to gather pioneers who are willing to found colonies on the red planet. The founders will be loaded on to a reusable rocket powered by liquid oxygen and methane. To begin the foundation process, the travelers will be provided with "large amounts of equipment, including machines to produce fertilizer, methane and oxygen from Mars' atmospheric nitrogen and carbon dioxide and the planet's subsurface water ice," according to CBS News.
"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 earlier this month.
Other building tools would also be provided in order to create domes that could sustain the proper environment for earth grown crops on the Martian soil. As the project progresses, less equipment would be transported and in its spot, additional passengers would be added to the rocket.
But tickets won't come cheap. Those looking to have an out of this planet experience may have to pay an estimated $500,000 just to board the rocket. But Musk's company is not the only one with its eye on Mars. Mars One declared over the summer that it would set up the first human colony on Mars by 2023. The project is being run by entrepreneur Bas Lansdorp, who also hopes to develop a reality show surrounding the process.
"The entire world will be able to watch and help with decisions as the teams of settlers are selected, follow their extensive training and preparation for the mission and of course observe their settling on Mars once arrived," Lansdorp announced during a media event. "The emigrated astronauts will share their experiences with us as they build their new home, conduct experiments and explore Mars."