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The realities of Elon Musk's "big" plan to colonize Mars


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Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk is set to unveil his plan on how to colonize Mars — a lifelong dream he hopes will become a reality within a decade.

The SpaceX founder and CEO will deliver the keynote address Tuesday at the 67th International Astronautical Congress in Guadalajara, Mexico, where he’ll offer details on “potential architectures for colonizing the Red Planet,” organizers told Bloomberg.

Space.com reports that SpaceX wants to launch its first Mars mission in May 2018 — less than two years away — with an unmanned Dragon capsule to test landing systems and other key technologies. Among the most critical technologies is “supersonic retropulsion,” which slows down the spacecraft with onboard thrusters against the flight path rather than deploying a gigantic parachute.

If those initial missions are successful, the company hopes to continue those flights once about every two years, culminating in the first human mission to Mars in 2025.


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