If you thought Elon Musk was going to let Richard Branson and Virgin Galactic hog the headlines regarding private space travel for long, you don’t know him very well. Musk has once again made news by revealing the progress made on his Starship prototype, which he says may be available for test flights by this spring.
Starship was previously known but the much more Muskian moniker of BFR, which stood for “Big Falcon Rocket” or “Big (expletive) Rocket,” depending who you ask. Either way, it’s the centerpiece of SpaceX’s overarching plan to send humans to Mars.
Elon Musk tweeted out the photo of the Starship prototype recently, although in the photo he merely captioned it “Stainless Steel Starship.” Since then, however, Musk has been much more forthcoming about his company’s plans.
Although the ship will use stainless steel, it will also include a “different mixture of alloys & new architecture,” Musk wrote. He added that he would do a complete technical presentation of Starship in March or April “after the test vehicle we’re building in Texas flies.”
Furthermore, Musk has recently said that not only will he send interplanetary travelers to Mars using his company’s technology and ships, but said that he would definitely be among the travelers to go, as well. Musk has gone as far as to say that there is a “good chance” that he will be on Mars when his life comes to an end one day.
If you want to be among the travelers that will go to Mars via SpaceX’s ships one day, it will cost you a pretty penny: about $200,000, to be exact. However, that actually seems like a pretty solid deal for making a farther trip out into space than what has been made by any astronaut to date, when you think about it.