NASA aim of 2024 Moon touchdown is ‘truly doable’
SpaceX owner and Tesla CEO Elon Musk poses when he arrives on the red carpet for the Axel Springer Awards in Berlin on December 1, 2020.
Britta Pedersen | AFP | Getty Images
Elon Musk believes SpaceX can help NASA achieve its ambitious goal of landing astronauts on the moon by 2024.
“I think that can be done,” Musk said Friday after SpaceX launched the Crew 2 mission to go into orbit for a trip to the International Space Station.
“We’re more likely to strive for it, but I think it can actually be done,” he added. “We’re probably building a lot of missiles [will] Crash a few of them, but I think it will happen. “
SpaceX won a $ 2.9 billion contract from NASA last week as part of the agency’s Human Landing Systems program.
Starship’s SN11 prototype rocket is on the launchpad at the company’s Boca Chica, Texas facility.
Under the contract, Musk’s company will build a variation on its Starship rocket, the prototype of which SpaceX has tested in Boca Chica, Texas. The company has conducted several successful test flights of Starship, although attempts to land after the last four soaring flights have resulted in fiery explosions.
NASA’s Artemis program, announced by the administration of President Donald Trump and expected to continue under President Joe Biden, consists of several missions to the orbit and surface of the moon over the coming years.
Musk said, “It is a great honor to be selected by NASA to bring people back to the moon,” emphasizing his company’s vision of flying regular flights there and beyond.
“It’s been almost half a century since humans were last on the moon. It’s too long, we have to go back there and have a permanent base on the moon – again like a large permanently manned base on the moon. And then build a city on Mars to become a space civilization, a multiplanet species, “Musk said. “We don’t want to be one of those single planet species, we want to be a multiplanet species.”
Musk previously estimated that Starship would cost around $ 5 billion to fully develop, although SpaceX has not disclosed how much it spent on the program. On Friday, Musk noted that winning the contract is “really helpful” for Human Landing Systems because Starship’s development “has been largely internally funded and is quite expensive”.
“It’s hard to build a vehicle because we’re trying to crack this nut of a fast and fully reusable missile,” said Musk. “But what is really important to revolutionize space is a quickly reusable missile that is also reliable.”