Elon Musk Sets Ambitious Starship Production Goals 'To Achieve Mars Colonization' In 3 Decades

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk on Friday detailed his vision for Starship production going forward to enable landing people on Mars.

What Happened: SpaceX's Starship launch vehicle, composed of the starship spacecraft and the super heavy rocket, is a pivotal element in Musk's vision of landing humans on the Moon and Mars.

Though Starship is wholly reusable, its super heavy booster can be used more frequently than the ship, Musk said in a post. This necessitates ship production to be higher than booster production.

The booster returns in about 6 minutes and can ‘theoretically’ be ready for a re-flight in an hour, while the ship will need to complete at least one orbit, making reuse possible only on a day-to-day basis.

“To achieve Mars colonization in roughly three decades, we need ship production to be 100/year, but ideally rising to 300/year,” Musk said in his post.

Why It Matters: SpaceX has attempted two flight tests of its Starship thus far this year. During the first flight in April,  the rocket exploded in less than four minutes after take-off.

Starship's second liftoff on Nov. 18 saw successful stage separation, but the booster experienced an explosion shortly afterward. 

The spacecraft lost contact with SpaceX after reaching an altitude of nearly 150 kilometers, failing to complete the test launch's goal of a round-trip flight to space with a splashdown in the Pacific Ocean. 

Flight 3, however, seems to be on the horizon. On Friday, SpaceX conducted a static fire test of Super Heavy’s 33 Raptor engines at Starbase ahead of its third flight.

NASA is relying on the success of Starship to land humans on the moon in the next few years under its Artemis program.

Check out more of Benzinga's Future Of Mobility coverage by following this link.

Read Next: Elon Musk Teases SpaceX ‘Company Talk’ Session Next Week, Plans Tesla Insights In Follow-Up

Image: Created with artificial intelligence on MidJourney and Official SpaceX Photos on Flickr

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