SpaceX President says Starlink could ‘help fund long-term Mars development programs’

by Evelyn Arevalo April 30, 2021

SpaceX President says Starlink could ‘help fund long-term Mars development programs’

SpaceX founder Elon Musk is hell-bent on building the first colony on Mars. His aerospace company is working around-the-clock to develop the spacecraft and technology needed to ensure humans survive a seven-month-long voyage to the Red Planet, over 180-million miles away from Earth. SpaceX's interplanetary spacecraft, Starship, is already under development in South Texas. Musk says that to make life multiplanetary and ensure the first Martian settlers have a better chance at survival in the rough environment, the colonization plan would consist of launching megatons of cargo. To launch that much cargo a fleet of at least 1,000 Starships would be used to launch all that is needed over the course of ten to twenty years.

One of the reasons why humanity has not returned to the Moon in 50 years is because space travel is very expensive. Becoming a spacefaring civilization will come with an expensive price tag, that’s where SpaceX’s newest Starlink project comes in. Starlink broadband service could help fund SpaceX’s Mars goals long-term. The company aims to launch over 12,000 internet-beaming Starlink satellites to orbit where the constellation will provide broadband internet down to customers’ globally. If SpaceX achieves to obtain 25 million internet subscribers, it would generate around $30 billion annually, which is ten times more than what the company makes as a launch provider.

SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell was recently interviewed by Via Satellite reporter Rachel Jewett, article is linked below. During the great interview they discussed a variety of company-related subjects including how Starlink venture was conceived. “When Starlink was first conceived, what was the thought process? We’re great at launch, let’s get into rural broadband?” the Via Satellite reporter asked. –“I think Elon was mulling it over for some time,” Shotwell responded, “The total addressable market for launch, with a conservative outlook on commercial human passengers, is probably about $6 billion. But the addressable market for global broadband is $1 trillion. If you want to help fund long term Mars development programs, you want to go into markets and sectors that are much bigger than the one you're in, especially if there's enough connective tissue between that giant market, and what you're doing now. That’s how I recall it, but that’s a good question for Elon,” she said.

Via Satellite also asked Shotwell: “What are your personal hopes when you look toward an interplanetary future with Starship? What kind of future do you hope that SpaceX is enabling?” To which she replied –“To me, Starship is SpaceX’s first baby step in human exploration of other planets in the solar system, and moving to other solar systems and other galaxies. I never took an astronomy class, but I am captivated and mesmerized when I look up at the stars, knowing that every one of those is a solar system that could have life like Earth,” she said, “I yearn to go there and I think Starship is the start with that. It’s a very important step for human existence, and human learning. I look at it as a baby step to getting people out amongst the stars. I always joke about it, but I would love to see what fashion in other solar systems and other galaxies looks like. Did we get it right, or is there better?” Read the full Via Satellite interviewA Conversation With Gwynne Shotwell by Via Satellite

Featured Image Source: SpaceX





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