Mars Transportation Infrastructure

SpaceX have proposed the development of Mars transportation infrastructure in order to facilitate the eventual colonization of Mars. The mission architecture includes fully reusable launch vehicles, human-rated spacecraft, on-orbit propellant tankers, rapid-turnaround launch/landing mounts, and local production of rocket fuel on Mars via in situ resource utilization (ISRU). SpaceX’s aspirational goal is to land the first humans on Mars by 2024.

The key element of the infrastructure is supposed to be the SpaceX Starship, a fully reusable space vehicle. To achieve a large payload, the spacecraft would first enter Earth orbit, where it is expected to be refueled before it departs to Mars. After landing on Mars, the spacecraft would be loaded with locally-produced propellants to return to Earth. The expected payload of Super Heavy is for the Starship upper stage to inject between 100 – 150 tonnes (220,000 – 330,000 lb) to Mars.

SpaceX intends to concentrate its resources on the transportation part of the Mars colonization project, including the design of a propellant plant based on the Sabatier process that will be deployed on Mars to synthesize methane and liquid oxygen as rocket propellants from the local supply of atmospheric carbon dioxide and ground-accessible water ice.

More about Mars transportation infrastructure in Wikipedia.

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