TravelElon Musk Says We're All Going To Die, So Let's Go To Mars
Musk just announced plans to take us to the red planet. Peace out.
Elon Musk, the benevolent Agent Smith of our time, isn't content with inventing cars that drive themselves and rockets that fly themselves and solar panels that solar themselves. No, he's taking humanity to Mars so we don't all die. ALL A-FUCKING-BOARD!
Just this afternoon Musk announced, via web video, the details of how SpaceX will get people from our rapidly deteriorating blue orb up to the dusty, seemingly inhospitable planet known as Mars. "What I'm really trying to do is to make Mars seem possible," said Musk, sounding buoyant and optimistic. Then he dropped the heavy stuff:
"There will be some extinction event. I don't have some doomsday
prophecy. The alternative is to become a space-going species."
"Which, I hope you would agree is the right way to go."
[clapping, followed by dead silence]
Venus has a problem in that it's an acid bath, according to Musk. Mercury is too close to the sun. "We could conceivably go to the moon," said Musk. "But it's much smaller than our planet, it doesn't have any atmosphere, and it doesn't have as many resources." Oh, and it has a 28-day day. You think your meetings are long now? Wait until you're having week-long break-outs to talk report filing protocol on the goddamn moon.
Mars' day is pretty close to ours (just an extra 40 minutes), and the lower gravity would make us all feel like gods, allowing even the most Netflix'd and Chilled of us to jump absurdly high and lift massive weights. No one would ever lose at Mars Ninja Warrior.
But how do we get there? These are the four key ways Elon Musk is going to make Mars travel feasible, most of which directly translate to making it cheaper:
1. Reusable Rockets
Right now they're one-and-done, with boosters dropped over the ocean and left floating in space once they've burned off their usefulness. That's good money being chucked out the window like a long-haul trucker with a chaw-filled Snapple bottle.
2. Big-Ass Reusable Rockets
Musk tweeted out the rough details:
We're talking a 400-foot-tall rocket, which would make it the tallest in history if it existed today. Musk said it will fit roughly 100 people plus all the requisite cargo—luggage, iron foundries, pizza dough, etc.—to build a functional society.
3. In-Flight Fuel Refills
These rockets would be gassed up in orbit. It's the only way, since we can't afford to manufacture a rocket big enough to store the fuel for a trip there and back, says Musk. Fingers crossed the gas stations in space have Combos. Hands-down, the best snack for a long road trip. Get out of here with that moist meat rod Slim Jim garbage.
4. Methane Gas
It's safer to store than hydrogen, and we can find it on Mars. Especially if insist on bringing those nasty Slim Jims, I swear to god, man. Leave them.
A round-trip excursion to Mars will take about two years, which is admittedly a bummer. Still, watch this rendered SpaceX trailer demonstrating what the trip should look like—he says those rockets are the real-deal—and try not to get excited.
Oh, you got that tan from wintering in Bali? That's cool. I BLASTED TO ANOTHER PLANET AND SUFFERED SEVERE SPACE RADIATION.