Gwynne Shotwell, president and COO of SpaceX, claims rockets that allow people to travel anywhere in the world within 60 minutes will be a reality in a decade.
She made the comments during a recent Ted Talk in Vancouver where she also described Mars as a ‘fixer-upper planet’ and the first step to exploring more distant solar systems.
SpaceX founder Elon Musk last year annouced the latest addition to his company SpaceX’s arsenal – the ‘Big F***ing Rocket’ (BFR) – which he said could revolutionise transport on Earth as well as in space. damiadenuga.com
The vessel would both take off and land vertically, like a space rocket, and for Earth travel, will take off from floating launchpads moored outside major cities.
It would fly most routes – New York to Tokyo, for example – in about 30 minutes, and anywhere in under an hour, and Musk says the ‘cost per seat should be about the same as full fare economy in an aircraft.’
A trip from Bangkok to Dubai would take 27 minutes, and from Tokyo to Delhi in 30 minutes, according to his calculations.
It could even take people on rapid trips around Earth, with a flight from London to Dubai taking 29 minutes, while passengers will spend just half an hour in the air on flights from London to New York.
The technology will be ready and operational ‘within a decade, for sure’, said Shotwell.
‘It’s definitely going to happen,’ she said, interviewed onstage by TED’s Chris Anderson.
‘I’m personally invested in this one,’ she added.
‘I travel a lot, and I do not love to travel. And I would love to get to see my customers in Riyadh, leave in the morning and be back in time to make dinner.’
The rocket will be bigger than any other in existence, and will take satellites to orbit, crew and cargo to the International Space Station and even lead manned missions to the moon.
Reaching speeds of 18,000 miles per hour (29,000 kmh), the BFR could carry between 80 and 200 people per trip on flights to Mars, with the rocket’s first manned trip planned for 2024.
As well as terrestrial plans, Ms Shotwell said SpaceX will take humans to Mars ‘within a decade’.
Whilst having a human colony on Mars in less than ten years is still remarkable, this is a far more conservative estimate than was provided by Elon Musk – a fact not unknown to Ms Shotwell.
‘That’s Gwynne time. I’m sure Elon wants to go faster,’ she said.
SOURCE : GLTRENDS