Elon Musk reveals how he plans to colonise Mars in next few years in new short animated clip

Animation shows what seems to be a human colony on Mars with several landing pads

Vishwam Sankaran
Wednesday 12 April 2023 12:15 BST

Related video: Astronauts will make their own medicine in space

Elon Musk has revealed in a short animation clip how he plans to colonise Mars in the next few years.

SpaceX released a five-minute animated promotional video on Tuesday, showing how it plans to land humans on Mars using Mr Musk’s Starship spacecraft.

The animation, with a space-themed soundtrack, shows what it may look like if a Starship spacecraft landed on Mars one day.

It starts with Starship lifting off beyond the clouds and into space, and the first stage of the rocket separating once the spacecraft is in orbit.

The rocket, with its 33 Raptor engines capable of generating over 15 million pounds of lift-off thrust, then vertically lands back on Earth, exactly on the launchpad from which it took off.

Starship is seen continuing on its voyage and then descending on Mars as it becomes clear that the video isn’t depicting the first voyage of the rocket to the Red Planet.

Viewers can see what seems to be a human colony on Mars that has several landing pads.

While the video does not mention exactly when Mr Musk expects the colonisation of Mars to happen, the billionaire’s bet seems dependent on the success of SpaceX’s upcoming generation of rockets.

Mr Musk had said earlier this year that he was optimistic human presence on Mars was “possible” in 5 years and “highly likely” in a decade.

The Tesla and SpaceX chief said on Monday that the anticipated orbital launch of its most powerful yet Starship spacecraft will happen towards the end of April.

About two years after the last high-altitude flight test of this rocket, the company is finally preparing to launch the Mars-bound craft into orbit.

Mr Musk said the anticipated launch would happen “trending towards near the end of [the] third week of April”.

The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) had earlier marked 17 April as the primary launch date with backup dates in place for 18-22 April.

In the new planned flight test, Starship and its Super Heavy booster would lift off from SpaceX’s Starbase facility in Texas before splashing down off the coast of Hawaii.

While the space company had already completed a high-altitude flight test for a Starship prototype, many of its earlier tests ended in the rocket exploding.

This prompted the FAA to urge SpaceX to complete an environmental review and adjust flight conditions to avoid disrupting wildlife.

It seems the only thing standing currently in the way of SpaceX is regulatory approval from the FAA, which could have a decision on the environmental compliance review soon.

“I am not saying it will get to orbit, but I am guaranteeing excitement. It won’t be boring,” Mr Musk said last month

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