Elon Musk's vision of colonizing Mars has been all over the news. However, Boeing's Chief Executive Office Dennis Muilenburg is up to challenge Musk. In a recent conference, Muilenburg stated that he intends to send people to Mars first.
Boeing's Own Vision About Mars
Bloomberg reports that Muilenburg laid out his own Mars vision at an event in Chicago. The event sponsored by the Atlantic magazine had a discussion about innovation. Muilenburg is convinced that their Boeing rocket will carry the first person to step foot on Mars.
According to Bloomberg, the CEO proudly revealed a Jetsons-like future both focused on space exploration and commerce. What he envisions is the space version of commercial travel here on Earth.
He wants the said market with dozens of destinations orbiting the planet. People will be traveling between continents using a hypersonic aircraft. Apparently, such mode of transportation will only take two hours or less. The said aircraft will be three times as fast as the speed of sound.
Muilenburg said that space tourism will be blossoming over the next couple of decades. He hopes that this particular market will become viable. He added that the International Space Station could be joined in low-Earth orbit by dozens of hotels and companies. Micro-gravity manufacturing and research would be pursued.
Boeing is currently developing a Space Launch System (SLS) rocket with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). This heavy-lift rocket is being made for deep space exploration. This means that Boeing will use the SLS to send people to Mars.
According to The Verge, the company has been receiving billions of funds from NASA for the SLS.
SpaceX does not enjoy the same perks as the Boeing. They are currently self-funding their Mars rockets. That includes the company's upcoming Interplanetary Transport System. The Verge also reports that SpaceX has been using only 5 percent of its resources.
Both Boeing and SpaceX have yet to actually finish the rockets and send people to Mars. Until then, the bragging rights of being the first to send people to Mars is still up in the air.