Ever since the ‘60s, space exploration has been exponentially on the rise. Even with half a century of hard discovery and research, there is still more unknown about space than there is known. Getting to the moon was quite a large step for us but in the grand scheme of things, it was really just taking a “small step.” In retrospect, this mission contained the first man-made object to leave the solar system in just six years, whereas Voyager One, a spacecraft launched by NASA, took over thirty years to finally exit the solar system we call home.
However, a new man recently stepped up to the plate of exploration with the intent of answering some of man’s greatest unknowns. Because of his business background, SpaceX’s very own CEO, Elon Musk, has been able to privatize the space exploration industry.
He has successfully organized and carried out private space travel, the first private mission to the International Space Station, the flight that achieved a rocket’s first stage on land and on water, and much more. One of his most astonishing plans yet is to successfully complete the world’s first private lunar mission.
Before 2018, only 24 people have been to the moon and back. Yusaku Maezawa, the world’s first private passenger, has plans to complete that same journey in the year 2023. Maezawa, Japanese innovator and worldwide art curator, will board the Big Falcon Rocket, (BFR), along with 6 – 8 unannounced artists. He hopes to bring these artists a new perspective to create something brand new. Over the next five years, he hopes to get close and will start to reach out to a number of artists he loves to bring them aboard. In a later press conference, Musk reported that the whole project will cost about $5 billion with an undetermined amount of money paid by Maezawa.
Of course, space travel can be very dangerous. The BFR is able to seat about 100 people with an approximate 3 gradient ascent and 5-6 gradient descent back to Earth depending on the exact payload. However, for safety reasons, Musk plans to only board about a dozen passengers, with plenty of extra room for gas, water, food, spare parts, and other miscellaneous things the trip may require.
This privatized flight will help take the first step in providing accessible space travel for those around the world. Furthermore, it may only be that our generation will see the first man or woman set foot on Mars. Elon Musk confidently decided to take his first elementary steps into new boundaries amongst our solar system. The mission to Mars doesn’t have an official plan yet, but Musk has a strong desire to take a larger step for mankind by making life interplanetary.
Maezawa’s project and adventure can be followed through the hashtag #dearmoon.