Colonising Mars is not for the faint of heart. Image Credit: Lockheed Martin
As work on Elon Musk's prototype 'Starship' continues, the SpaceX CEO has highlighted the dangers of going to Mars.
This week, Starship SN6 - a prototype version of the ambitious spacecraft that Musk hopes will one day carry the first colonists to Mars - completed a successful test flight which involved 'hopping' approximaely 150 meters from one pad to another at SpaceX's Boca Chica facility.
The flight was an improvement over the previous SN5 test flight which took place just weeks before.
It's certainly no secret that Musk has some seriously ambitious plans for the future that involve, not just landing humans on Mars, but building up an entire colony living independently of the Earth.
Even he, however, admits that such a feat will be very difficult and very dangerous.
"Getting to Mars, I think, is not the fundamental issue," he said via CNBC. "The fundamental issue is building a base, building a city on Mars that is self-sustaining."
"We're going to build a propellant plant, an initial Mars base - Mars Base Alpha - and then get it to the point where it's self-sustaining."
"I want to emphasise that this is a very hard and dangerous, difficult thing, not for the faint of heart. Good chance you'll die, it's going to be tough going, but it will be pretty glorious if it works out."
The timetable for the first manned mission to Mars still remains up in the air, with the date having already been pushed back considerably and with no clear target set at the present time.
Still, given Musk's past successes in the space sector, it is not outside the realms of possibility that he will eventually succeed in ushering humanity on it's next major step towards the stars.