Elon Musk says SpaceX will make 'short flights' to Mars next year

Tim McAlpine  Twitter

"We are building the first ship, the first interplanetary ship right now, and I think we will be able to do short flights, short sort of up and down flights, probably sometime in the first half of next year", he said.

"Although sometimes, my timelines are a little, you know." he said, to laughter, CNBC reported.

On more trivial notes, when questioned on who he was inspired by, Mr Musk said that Kanye West was someone he looked up to. "I think that's the single biggest existential crisis that we face, and the most pressing one", he said.

While his projects such as Tesla's Model 3 "affordable" new vehicle have been dogged by delays, he's become the driving force behind a new space race. I think a Mars base and a Moon base that could help regenerate life back on Earth would be really important and to get that done before a possible World War III. He also predicted a utopian social model for the red planet, akin to the ancient Greek republics, without the slavery.

The rocket's primary payload, a 3,200-pound radar-imaging satellite called PAZ, for the Spanish government, and SpaceX's newly dubbed Tintin A & Tintin B satellites (formally known as Microsat-2a and Microsat-2b) were successfully deployed about 11 minutes after the Falcon lifted off.

Musk predicted that, if SpaceX achieves its goal of laying the groundwork for a future human colony on Mars, it will prompt a wave of other private enterprises entering the space race.

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Wrapped around all four corners of the Austin Convention Center, a line of people waited anxiously for a golden ticket-their chance to get a glimpse of Elon Musk, the "modern-day Ironman".

It was Musk's long-range plan for sending settlers to Mars that took up most of the attention.

"Mars will need everything from iron foundries to pizza joints", he said. He added, "Mark my words, AI is far more risky than nukes".

Today's conversation ranged over all things Musk - from SpaceX and Tesla, to The Boring Company, Neuralink and the billionaire's concerns about artificial superintelligence.

"Nobody would suggest that we allow anyone to just build nuclear warheads if they want, that would be insane".

Artist's rendering of U.S. astronaut planting a flag on Mars.

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