The public was not supposed to be aware of the secret SpaceX conference, but it somehow made its way on the internet, so (part of) the cat is out of the bag.
Considering Elon Musk’s dream to fly humans to Mars, this should have been the topic, along with not being able to make it happen in the near future – according to NASA reports. Plus, after revealing his intentions a few years ago, Musk forgot to think of what will humans do once they’re on Mars? What is the goal after we reach the Red Planet?
Making These Missions Happen
It was probably why Musk sent private invitations to over 60 renowned scientists and engineers, and to leaders from NASA’s Mars Exploration Program. They met at UC Boulder for “active discussions regarding what will be needed to make these missions happen” – a quote written on the secret invite that Ars Technica claims to have seen.
The conference took place on 8 August, and it was hosted by Paul Wooster (principal Mars development engineer – SpaceX), Margarita Marinova (senior Mars development engineer), and the dean of the CU Boulder College of Engineering and Applied Science, Bobby Braun (also former NASA technologist).
According to a statement given by Braun, it is clear why they and NASA showed up to the conference:
“From flying payloads to the International Space Station with NASA to partnering with Colorado aerospace giants like Ball Aerospace, United Launch Alliance, Sierra Nevada, DigitalGlobe, and Lockheed Martin in research and workforce development, to developing and operating next-generation space science payloads and missions across the Solar System — CU Boulder is advancing innovation across the aerospace sector.”
Among the most important subjects, they talked about colonizing Mars and finding ways to use its natural resources to sustain those colonies. SpaceX wanted to find different answers to these questions so that together with NASA, scientists, and engineers, they can finally reach the Red Planet.
Considering that NASA already collaborates with SpaceX for sending supplies and creating the spacecraft to send a commercial crew to the ISS, it should not surprise us if they were to work together for deep space missions.
Bottom line: we might not know how exactly we’ll get to Mars and what we’ll do once we’re on the Martian surface, but Musk believes we’ll get there.
Andre Blair s is the lead editor for Advocator.ca. He holds a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Toronto, and a Master of Science in Public Health (M.S.P.H.) from the School of Public Health, Department of Health Administration, at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Andre specializes in environmental health, but writes on a variety of issues.