Elon Musk tweeted new details about SpaceX's much-anticipated plan for the company's colonization of Mars, claiming it will become a reality by mid-century.
Elon Musk reveals new details about SpaceX's sweeping vision of a multiplanetary human race
Elon Musk took to Twitter this week and provided details on his company's plans for make human beings "multiplanetary."
Megatons per year to orbit are needed for life to become multiplanetary— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 17, 2020
When one of Musk's followers replied with an estimate of the number of rocket launches it would take to reach the "megatons" target, the conversation started getting more ambitious for the SpaceX founder.
So 666 flights of starship per year 😉 I like your style 🤘that’s almost two flights a day, think that’s feasible?— Everyday Astronaut (@Erdayastronaut) January 17, 2020
Starship design goal is 3 flights/day avg rate, so ~1000 flights/year at >100 tons/flight, so every 10 ships yield 1 megaton per year to orbit— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 17, 2020
Building 100 Starships/year gets to 1000 in 10 years or 100 megatons/year or maybe around 100k people per Earth-Mars orbital sync— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 17, 2020
That’s the goal— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 17, 2020
One follower did another back-of-the-envelope calculation and brought the true scope of SpaceX's ambition — at least as far as Musk is concerned — into sharper focus.
So a million people by 2050?— Pranshu_Ag 🔥👊 (@PRANSHUAGARWA13) January 17, 2020
Yes— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 17, 2020
Not everybody was a fan of the idea, though.
And how many megatons of carbon is that putting into our own atmosphere?— Desmond Tsuga 🇯🇲+🇳🇱=🇺🇸 (@DesmondTsuga) January 17, 2020
Musk is playing rocket man while people starve.
The Well-Actually brigade made their scheduled appearance, as expected:
Rockets run on hydrogen, oxygen and or methane, carbon doesn't have anything to do with it. Not to mention elons other company, you know the electric car company, the one that's providing clean electric transportation. Get out of here , your embarassing yourself— Arthagnan (@Arthagnan1) January 17, 2020
and promptly embarrassed themselves on the internet in the process.
Do you even physics ? Carbon does have everything to do with methane... And guess what ? SpaceX raptor engines are powered with methane. Which, btw, contributes 25 time more than carbon dioxide to global warming.— Rémi (@PenTiuM59) January 17, 2020
Methane, whose chemical formula is CH4, is the simplest hydrocarbon possible. It's structure literally has a carbon atom at the center, with four hydrogen atoms attached to form the compound. It is also one of the most potent greenhouse gases currently being pumped into our atmosphere.
How realistic is Elon Musk's timeline? It's hard to say, though the first step is to get a single human up into space, which they have yet to do but except to start later this year.