In the future, SpaceX’s CEO Elon Musk wants to offer a $500,000 ticket to Mars

SpaceX Falcon HeavyDespite the fact SpaceX has yet to complete a total of ten missions into space, or even one to the Moon, CEO Elon Musk has some very big ideas about our interplanetary future, and recently outlined them in an interview with the BBC.

SpaceX is probably best known for the Dragon spacecraft, which is set to make its maiden voyage to the International Space Station soon, but even this mammoth task looks simple next to Musk’s future endeavors. First discussed last year, Mr. Musk has now expanded on his plan to send astronauts to Mars, including the amount of money he hopes to charge for a round-trip.

His jaw-dropping vision requires considerable scientific advancement before becoming reality though, as it needs a completely reusable rocket that would be refueled on Mars before heading back to Earth, but once the technology became established, Musk firmly believes a ticket could cost as “little” as $500,000.

To put that figure into context, Virgin Galactic’s tickets cost $200,000 each, and only gets you as far as the edge of our atmosphere.

Musk doesn’t only see the trip as being one for sight-seeing either, but as a chance for Earth-bound folk to sell-up everything they own and move to Mars. Of course, there are a few stumbling blocks at the moment — a shortage of housing, difficult climate and no Starbucks — but then he isn’t expecting this to happen tomorrow.

He estimates the $500,000 ticket cost would come some ten years after the project first starts, which according to NASA is still at least 20 or 30 years away. However, in the interview, the supremely confident Musk said SpaceX could be ready to go in just 15 years time.

Mars is quite far though, so expect at least six or seven months in space using current propulsion methods before arriving, then the same again for your return journey.

The complete plan for how SpaceX expects to achieve its Mars mission is going to be revealed either later this year or early next, and even though it all sounds incredibly optimistic — and perhaps even faintly ridiculous — there’s something about Elon Musk’s demeanor that makes you think that yes, he really will take us to Mars, and that it won’t be long until he does.

Emerging Tech

SpaceX makes rocketry look easy, sticks yet another Falcon 9 landing

SpaceX is due to perform its latest Falcon 9 rocket launch and landing on November 15 from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. Here's how you can watch the proceedings live.
Digital Trends Live

DT Daily: Global internet, quantum computing prove the future is now

Global internet, quantum computing, and fire-resistant exoskeletons may seem like the stuff of science fiction, but as we learned on today's episode of DT Daily, all these things may soon be reality.
Emerging Tech

Prepare for liftoff: Here are all the important upcoming SpaceX rocket launches

From ISS resupply missions to a host of communication and scientific satellite launches, SpaceX has a busy year ahead. Here's a rundown of some of the company's most important missions slated for the next year.
Emerging Tech

New simulation shows how Elon Musk’s internet satellite network might work

Elon Musk has the dream of building a network for conveying internet traffic via thousands of satellites. A new simulation created by a computer scientist looks at how feasible the idea is.
Emerging Tech

DJI Mavic 2 Pro vs Mavic 2 Zoom: What’s the real difference?

DJI's Mavic 2 series drones are ready to fly -- but which one is right for you? The Mavic 2 Pro and Mavic 2 Zoom are nearly identical save for their cameras. Here's what you need to know about these powerful new UAVs.
Emerging Tech

This startup will sequence your entire genome for free — but there’s a catch

Want to get your DNA sequenced but don’t want to shell out the hundred bucks or so to do so? A new startup called Nebula Genomics offers you the opportunity to have it done for free.
Emerging Tech

Students who designed transforming smart home will compete in Solar Decathalon

Modular smart homes are all the rage, and now some students from Virginia Tech are putting their money on their FutureHAUS, a modular, solar-powered, transforming smart home they're taking to the Solar Decathlon in Dubai.
Emerging Tech

Here’s all the best tech gear and gadgetry that survived Shark Tank

The television show "Shark Tank" has churned out quite a few strange, interesting, and downright awesome products -- so we rounded up some of the best ones for your perusal. Enjoy!
Emerging Tech

Hotter than the sun: Chinese fusion reactor claims breakthrough

China’s “artificial sun” has reached a temperature of 180 million ºF with a heating power of 10 megawatts -- six times hotter than the center of the sun. The achievement could mark progress towards fusion as a clean energy source.
Emerging Tech

Hope it doesn’t melt! Rocket to ISS carries vital supplies — including ice cream

A rocket has launched over Virginia's eastern shore, carrying supplies to the International Space Station (ISS). Inside the spacecraft are supplies for the ISS itself and the crew onboard, such as scientific equipment and food.
Emerging Tech

‘Super-Earth’ discovered orbiting nearby star

Astronomers have discovered a large planet circling a sun nearby to Earth called Barnard's Star. The potential new planet is thought to be cold and icy and has a size of around 3.2 times the Earth.
Emerging Tech

OSIRIS-REx spacecraft successfully tests its asteroid-sampling arm

The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft, launched in September 2016, is closing in on its target of the Bennu asteroid. The craft has now unfurled its robotic arm, called the Touch-and-Go Sample Acquisition Mechanism (TAGSAM), and tested it successfully.
Emerging Tech

Microsoft’s friendly new A.I wants to figure out what you want — before you ask

Move over Siri and Alexa! Microsoft wants to build a new type of virtual assistant that wants to be your friend. Already making waves in Asia, could this be the future of A.I. BFFs?
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: A.I. selfie drones, ‘invisible’ wireless chargers

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!