Elon Musk: Get To Mars Before World War Three
12:08, UK, Monday 14 December 2015
SpaceX founder Elon Musk says mankind needs to send a crewed mission to Mars before a disaster like World War Three makes it impossible.
The entrepreneur fears that a war could set back space exploration and other technological advancements.
SpaceX was the first private company to resupply the International Space Station, and now has its eyes set on carrying humans to the red planet.
Mr Musk has said that this could be possible in the next 10 to 15 years, and told GQ that it could be important to ensure the long-term survival of mankind by setting up a Martian colony.
But he warned that there is only a brief window to accomplish this before it is thwarted by wars or natural disasters.
He said: “I think we need to acknowledge that there’s certainly a possibility of a third World War, and if that does occur it could be far worse than anything that’s happened before.
“Let’s say nuclear weapons are used. I mean, there could be a very powerful social movement that’s anti-technology.
“There’s also growth in religious extremism. Like, I mean, does ISIS grow?”
He says he will announce detailed plans of a mission to colonise Mars early next year, called the Mars Colonisation Transport programme.
He said: “I think it’s gonna seem pretty crazy, no matter what. It’s really big. There’s not been any architecture like this described that I’m aware of.”
He said Mars could be made more habitable by using “nuclear pulses” in the upper atmosphere to heat the planet.