Wednesday, June 18, 2014
We won't get to Mars by committee or consolidation. War metaphors and battle rhetoric won’t help us escape our planet’s formidable gravity well. Taking an adversarial stance against SpaceX is energy not spent on solving the myriad challenges involved in colonizing Mars. How about getting in on the adventure, instead of framing SpaceX as a threat?
Elon Musk has been quite clear about his goals: He would like to die on Mars, just not on impact.
A friend of mine, who right now is helping build the rockets that will take humans to Mars, provided this succinct summary:
The part that gets me is people forget Elon isn’t doing this for the money. He's doing it to colonize Mars. We need the EELV (Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle) scale of money simply to pay for Mars. We called out the world saying: “Your rockets aren’t good enough, and they have hardly evolved. Here is our rocket. It is better”. And people started hoarding all of their money because that’s what rockets are to them, an ATM. A demand that only a few can supply. Others fall short because they realize there is no money to be made in upgrading rockets once they’ve been proven to work. Since ULA is obviously in this to make money, the only plays they have left is to tear down SpaceX, or spend the least amount of money possible to make people think they are securing new engines, and then scramble to make sure everybody has a chair before the music stops. The last thing ULA will ever be able to provide are the means to colonize Mars simply because somewhere, someone in that company uttered the phrase "return on investment".