Two of the best known aerospace manufacturers and space transport service providers, Boeing and SpaceX are continuously maintaining an intense rivalry regarding their plans of sending humans to Mars. Recently, Boeing CEO and Chairman, Dennis Muilenburg talked about a belief that his company will trump SpaceX in sending humans to the red planet.
Recently at the 67th International Astronautical Conference, Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX talked about his ambitious plans of creating a colony on Mars. The event involved a lot of fantastic stuff including a 1000 times reusable rocket and provided details about the company’s strategy for achieving what would have been termed as ridiculous, just a few years ago.
Well, you cant expect Boeing to take all that quietly, can you? On Tuesday — and just a week after Elon Musk’s revelations in Guadalajara, Mexico — Boeing’s Chief Executive Officer and Chairman, Dennis Muilenburg talked about the big innovation ideas that his company has for the near future.
Taking a jab at SpaceX’s expansive plans for Mars colonization, Muilenburg said,
First person on Mars. I’m convinced that the first person to step foot on Mars will arrive there riding on a Boeing rocket.
SpaceX is looking to bring about a reduction in the space transportation costs and enable the colonization of Mars. Boeing is also aiming at somewhat similar goals. However, both these companies would need to collect a huge amount of money to send anyone to Mars. The companies are also competing over various contracts.
To get an idea of the expenses entailed, NASA will be spending about $60 billion for developing and flying the SLS rocket, before any possibilities of sending anywhere between four to six humans on Mars in the upcoming years (possibly till 2030s) arises. The above figure is excluding any spacecraft expenses, deep-space habitats and accommodations on Mars’s surface.
Elon Musk on the other hand, has already professed that his company would set up colonies on Mars within the next 100 years. His plans include transportation of 100 colonists at a time on a rocket that has been projected as four times as powerful as the SLS rocket. At present Elon Musk’s plans are being criticized for being too unrealistic and overly ambitious but hey, you gotta start somewhere, right?