October 11th, 2016

Barack Obama: America will take the giant leap to Mars CNN

obamaWe have set a clear goal vital to the next chapter of America’s story in space: sending humans to Mars by the 2030s and returning them safely to Earth, with the ultimate ambition to one day remain there for an extended time. Getting to Mars will require continued cooperation between government and private innovators, and we’re already well on our way.

The next step is to reach beyond the bounds of Earth’s orbit. I’m excited to announce that we are working with our commercial partners to build new habitats that can sustain and transport astronauts on long-duration missions in deep space. These missions will teach us how humans can live far from Earth — something we’ll need for the long journey to Mars.

October 6th, 2016

T-Mobile CEO Says He’ll Send Someone to Mars If He Gets 1 Million Retweets CNBC

T-Mobile CEO John Legere wants to send someone to Mars.

Legere on Wednesday offered on Twitter a trip to Mars for one lucky individual, provided that the offer gets more than one million retweets by 11:59 p.m. PT on Oct. 11.

A T-Mobile spokeswoman said “When he [John Legere] hit 3 million – and Elon Musk basically said Mars travel is coming from SpaceX in just a few years for just $200k a person – John thought: “Let’s send someone to Mars!”

October 4th, 2016

Leonardo DiCaprio Says He Signed Up for Elon Musk’s Mars Trip

Leonardo DiCaprio has sailed on the Titanic, battled grizzly bears in the brutal wild west, and explored dreams. Now, though, the 41-year-old actor says he’s going to travel to Mars — but for real.

Well, at least that’s what he told President Barack Obama.

DiCaprio was at the White House on Monday night as part of the South by South Lawn event. The actor, the president, and climate scientist Dr. Katharine Hayhoe took the stage towards the end of the evening for a conversation on climate change before the U.S. premiere of DiCaprio’s new documentary on the subject, Before the Flood.

September 29th, 2016

Space farms could feed Musk’s mission to colonize Mars Yahoo! Finance

Scientists are making strides in growing food in space, and their efforts could be critical to eventually supporting a permanent human colony on Mars.

“We can grow plants on Mars just by compressing the atmosphere,” SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk said Tuesday in a long-awaited speech detailing his vision for sending humans to Mars by 2025. The billionaire engineer said the Red Planet is “resource rich” with water ice and compounds necessary to support plants, such as nitrogen.

Experts say astronauts could pack enough packaged or freeze-dried food to get to Mars and back, although living on the planet for extended periods would get increasingly difficult without regular food-supply missions. Mars would require a six-month journey to the planet, an 18-month stay and a six-month trip back.

September 27th, 2016

How Elon Musk Plans to Go to Mars Gizmodo

Interplanetary Transport System

SpaceX plans to build a “self-sustaining city” on Mars, according to its founder Elon Musk. But, while we now know a lot more about how SpaceX plans to get to Mars, details about how people will actually survive up there remain sketchy.

Musk dropped the news on Tuesday during an address at the International Astronautical Congress meeting in Guadalajara, Mexico, where he had promised to reveal how the company planned to send people to live on Mars.

“I don’t have an immediate doomsday prophecy,” said Musk, but he noted that he saw only two possible paths forward. “One path is to stay on Earth forever, and there will be some extinction event. The alternative is to become a multi-planetary species, which I hope you will agree is the right way to go.”

September 27th, 2016

Making Humans a Multiplanetary Species SpaceX

SpaceX Founder, CEO, and Lead Designer Elon Musk will discuss the long-term technical challenges that need to be solved to support the creation of a permanent, self-sustaining human presence on Mars. The technical presentation will focus on potential architectures for sustaining humans on the Red Planet that industry, government and the scientific community can collaborate on in the years ahead.

September 26th, 2016

SpaceX’s humans-to-Mars rocket gets fired up SpaceX

Elon Musk/Twitter

Elon Musk’s private space endeavor SpaceX on Sunday conducted its first test of the Raptor rocket engine designed to take humans to Mars as early as 2024.

Musk tweeted about the test, which took place at the company’s McGregor, Texas, facility, ahead of his keynote address at the 67th annual International Astronautical Congress on Tuesday. In the speech, titled “Making Humans a Multiplanetary Species,” he is expected to unveil the design for the Mars Colonial Transporter, as well as his plan for colonizing the Red Planet.

September 21st, 2016

Earth to Mars: This startup is trying to make IoT power packs that work in outer space SpaceX

Finnish startup Tespack is working with the Austrian Space Forum on providing astronauts with advanced technology carried in solar-charged backpacks for the first manned mission to Mars.
Image: Tespack/Austrian Space Forum

The internet of things is meant to be a game-changer. Yet the technology still faces important physical challenges, such as distance limitations, battery life, and durability. All these issues become even more pronounced in the extreme conditions found in very hot or cold locations.

Tespack is trying to tackle some of these problems by developing solar-powered backpacks with IoT and connectivity capabilities, to take energy-generation not only to the next level, but even to another planet.

The Finnish startup, which develops mobile-energy products for use in remote areas, such as Antarctica or on Everest, recently announced a partnership with the Austrian Space Forum, carrying out fundamental research on Mars analogs.

September 20th, 2016

NASA’s Mars 2020 rover to produce oxygen on the Red Planet SpaceX

Mars Oxygen ISRU Experiment (MOXIE) is an exploration technology investigation that will produce oxygen from Martian atmospheric carbon dioxide. Image Credit: NASA

NASA’s Mars 2020 rover will not only investigate the Red Planet, searching for evidence of past life on Mars, but also it is expected to lay the foundations for future human exploration of the planet. One of the mission’s instruments, called MOXIE, will have a special task – testing technology essential for Mars colonization.

“MOXIE is one of nine instruments, but it is the only one that is relevant to human exploration,” Donald Rapp, one of the co-investigators of MOXIE, told

MOXIE stands for the Mars OXygen In-situ resource utilization Experiment. With a diameter of 9.4 by 9.4 by 12.2 inches (23.9 cm × 23.9 cm × 30.9 cm), the instrument will produce oxygen from the Martian carbon dioxide atmosphere at a rate of about 0.35 ounces (10 grams) per hour. It is a 1:100 scale test model of a future instrument that would be efficient for human explorers on Mars.

“The object is not to produce a lot of oxygen. The object is to show that the process works on Mars. MOXIE produces only about 10 [grams] per hour of oxygen, less than one percent of full scale,” Rapp said.

September 19th, 2016

Moon-walker Buzz Aldrin opens new Mars exhibit at Kennedy Space Center SpaceX

Apollo 11 moon-walker Buzz Aldrin says he hopes the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex’s new “Destination: Mars” experience will help inspire human exploration of the Red Planet.

Aldrin was at the complex on Sunday at a media preview and ribbon-cutting for the attraction, which features a holographic image of Aldrin, as he guides visitors on a walk along the virtual Martian surface.

A proponent of colonization of Mars, Aldrin told reporters that he would like to see the next president make a bold statement shortly after taking office in January for accelerating the timeline for human spaceflight to Mars, so that we can one day “call two planets ‘home.'”