Elon Musk predicted that humans could land on Mars within the next decade.
At an awards ceremony on Tuesday, the billionaire said he is “fairly confident” that such a Mars mission could happen within the next six years. He also explained how 2026 or 2024 could be ideal opportunities to launch such an endeavor.
“The Earth-Mars synchronization occurs roughly every 26 months,” Musk said. “We had one this year in the summer, and that means in roughly about two years, there will be another one and two years after that. I think if you said, ‘six years from now,’ I’d say, ‘highly confident,’ and if we get lucky, maybe four years.”
Musk said he is hopeful to send an unmanned mission to Mars within the next two years.
“I’m obviously concerned with developing the technology that can enable a lot of people to go to Mars and make life multiplanetary, have a base on the moon, a city on Mars,” Musk said. “I think it’s important that we strive to have a self-sustaining city on Mars as soon as possible. I’m optimistic about the future on Earth, but I think it’s important to have life insurance for life as a whole.”
Musk has repeatedly expressed an interest in leading missions to Mars, and SpaceX has sent four astronauts to the International Space Agency on its first operational flight for NASA last month.