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Space & Astronomy

NASA wants to land humans on Mars by 2033

By T.K. Randall
April 3, 2019 · Comment icon 21 comments

NASA has its sights set far beyond the Moon. Image Credit: NASA / Pat Rawlings
The space agency is hoping to launch its first manned mission to the Red Planet within the next 14 years.
Last week Vice President Mike Pence announced that NASA would be pushing back the timetable for landing humans on the Moon by a full 5 years with the goal of launching a manned mission by 2024.

Now it seems as though this move will also bring forward plans for a manned mission to Mars as well, as evidenced by NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine's comments to lawmakers during a recent congressional hearing on Capitol Hill.

"We want to achieve a Mars landing in 2033," he said.
"We can move up the Mars landing by moving up the Moon landing. The Moon is the proving ground. We have to be able to utilize the resources of another world."

Critics however argue that NASA will struggle to achieve even the manned Moon landing in time, let alone a Mars landing which will be significantly more challenging in just about every possible way.

Work on some of the technologies that will be required, such as the Space Launch System, is already behind schedule - not to mention the need for landing vehicles, radiation shielding, new spacesuits and a sustainable long-haul crew module capable of keeping astronauts alive for months at a time.

As things stand, the challenges of launching a manned mission to Mars seem almost insurmountable.

Source: Phys.org | Comments (21)




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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #12 Posted by Ell 5 years ago
The cost of the Apollo missions was about 150 billion dollars (2018 money). I expect that a new and extended stay on the Moon would cost at least 500 billion dollars. One four man Mars mission is estimated to cost 6 billion dollars. In my opinion that is extremely optimistic.
Comment icon #13 Posted by MWoo7 5 years ago
Half of us will be dead by that time.  Sounds extremely expensive to me, well at least its not one thousand 500 billion.  Like in 2030, oh wait, never mind.  
Comment icon #14 Posted by Black Red Devil 5 years ago
You look like a young kitten to me.
Comment icon #15 Posted by EBE Hybrid 5 years ago
I agree 6 Billion is super optimistic. Just think of the logistics for the mission. The interplanetary vehicle would probably be built in orbit, mainly because it would need to be big enough to provide a healthy amount of space for the astronauts to stretch their legs and hold a decent amount of food and water. This would require several earth to orbit launches. Carrying all of the supplies, Mars landing vehicle, fuel for the landing vehicle to return to Mars orbit, Mars habitat (along with a nuclear reactor to power it) and Mars surface exploration vehicles all in one ship seems a little ambi... [More]
Comment icon #16 Posted by MWoo7 5 years ago
Why yeaus    We were all young sweet things and spring chicks at one time . . .  
Comment icon #17 Posted by Coil 5 years ago
Waspie_Dwarf, toast I heard your point of view, well, we will wait when America collects money and in the future will fly by itself.  
Comment icon #18 Posted by HawkLord 5 years ago
I'm pretty sure they meant by 2133.
Comment icon #19 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf 5 years ago
Whilst that is true, robots are still inferior to human beings in many ways... self driving cars anyone? In the 24 years that Opportunity was active on Mars it covered a total distance of 28.06 miles. In 1972 two astronauts on a lunar rover covered a total distance of 22.30 miles in 4 hours 26 minutes. In tests on Earth fossils were placed in a test area to see if scientists would be able to detect them via a rover. They failed to find a single one. Doing science remotely is cheaper and safer, but it is not better. There is no substitute (yet) for human eyes and minds. Robotic exploration has ... [More]
Comment icon #20 Posted by tmcom 5 years ago
More likely that it will be an united endeavor, or other countries will chip in, and we will circle Mars only and land on one of its moons, (virtually no gravity so a close orbit and anchor would do). Then look around for anything out of the ordinary, which is an understatement. The year 2033 will be a year we will never forget.  
Comment icon #21 Posted by Eldorado 5 years ago
There's more than just cash investment to hurdle... "From Radiation to Isolation: 5 Big Risks for Mars Astronauts." At Space dot com: https://www.space.com/42918-big-space-risks-mars-astronauts-videos.html It's an "almighty" endeavour.  To boldly go, where no one has gone before.


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