Opinion: One-Way Trip Best Way to Go to Mars


Credit: University of Arizona/JPL/NASA

A One-way Ticket to Mars
Paul Davies

Astrobiology Magazine

What I’d like to talk about today is how to cut the cost of going to Mars. And there’s one very obvious way, which is a one-way mission.

Isn’t this a crazy idea, a one-way mission to Mars? Who could possibly volunteer for such a thing? Isn’t this a suicide mission? Well, the answer is: no, this is not a suicide mission.

I would envisage probably four people would go in the first instance. But a one-way mission to Mars would not just be a one-off exercise. They would be trailblazers. It would be the first step to establishing a permanent human presence on another world. Although they would go without the expectation of returning, they would have the expectation that sooner or later they would be joined by others and that this Mars base would grow and eventually become a permanent Mars colony that might take hundreds of years to establish.

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