NASA has officially revealed its 30-year plan on getting man to Mars and it seems they have every intention to make it a one way trip. Scientists have been saying for years that the next step in space exploration is to get human on the surface of Mars. We’ve done all the exploring we can on Earth so the next logical step seems to head to the red planet. And with the recent revelation there is running water on Mars and the possibility of life, it only seems natural we would want to check it out.
The 30-year plan detailed by NASA reveals there currently working on studies with keeping astronauts in space for a year (two have been living in the ISS for the last six months). Next, NASA would kidnapped an asteroid and have astronauts land on it for study at a distance beyond the moon. They hope to have this complete by 2020. Following a successful mission, the plan would be to have astronauts in orbit around Mars and its moons doing study, this is expected to be completed by the 2030s. The plan concludes with astronauts landing on Mars as early as 2040.
One key detail in the plan is the wording of sending the astronauts to “stay.” While NASA refused to use the word “colonization” it seemed that this was the direction they are heading in. Rather then making the Mars trips a back and forth (it’s a grueling 18 months in space) it would be more cost effective to set up habitats and labs on the Mars surface and simply send new missions.
We shall see how close to schedule NASA sticks but with a budget in place of $ 4 billion a year, they seem on track to get things done.