SpaceX plan to send humans deeper into space than when NASA went to the moon.
Elon Musk’s space exploration company announced on Monday (14 February) that their craft will begin a new programme called Polaris later in 2022, with two flights coming this year.
The crew will include American billionaire and SpaceX donor Jared Isaacman, who last year became the first person to buy a first SpaceX space tourism flight.
Air Force fighter pilot Scott Poteet, and engineers Sarah Gillis and Anna Menon will join him on board.
The ambitious missions will see the two engineers take part in the first ever commercial spacewalk — a feat that until now has only ever been achieved by government space agencies.
An excited Jared Isaacman told the Today show: “We’re going to go farther into space than humans have gone since we’ve last walked on the moon”
The entrepreneur said that two missions on their existing Dragon spacecraft in November or December of this year would help the firm prepare for their first ever manned mission on the new Starship rocket in the years ahead, which they are currently developing in co-operation with NASA.
He added: “We’re going to learn as much as we can from the Polaris Program side of things, SpaceX is going to learn an awful lot as they’re getting Starship ready for its first human spaceflight and I think we’re going to combine that to ultimately form what the second mission should look like”
SpaceX eventually wants to use Starship as a fully reusable, two-stage transportation system that can send humans and large sets of cargo to the moon, mars and other solar system locations.
The billionaire believes that his company will be able to put a person on the planet within 10 years but hopes for his mission to be achieved much sooner.
Musk told the Lex Fridman Podcast in December that the best-case scenario would be in around five years.
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