Elon Musk says SpaceX could take humans to Mars in just 9 years

Elon Musk and SpaceX

Elon Musk believes SpaceX could deliver humans to Mars in just 9 years.

This was not the first time Musk has given that timeline, although he reiterated it at the Code Conference on Wednesday night.

“If things go according to plan, we should be able to — we should be able to — launch people in 2024, with arrival in 2025,” Musk said.

“That’s the game plan,” he added.

Musk said he’s planning to share an architectural plan for the colonization of Mars at a conference in September.

In his interview with Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg, Musk plotted avision of travel throughout the Solar System, and “ultimately other star systems” which he says provides the kind of inspiration that makes life worth living.

Musk, the CEO of SpaceX, has previously said that he would “like to die on Mars, just not on impact.”

During last night’s interview Musk clarified that he didn’t have a “Martian death wish,” but “I think if you’re going to choose a place to die, then Mars is probably not a bad choice.”

“This will be a very big rocket,” he said Wednesday.

He outlined SpaceX’s recent breakthroughs with reusable rockets and said the company plans to “re-fly one of the landed rocket boosters” toward the end of the summer.

While Musk and SpaceX have missed some deadlines in the past, he said the Dragon Version 2 spacecraft should be ready for a trip to Mars in 2018.

“It has the interior volume of a large SUV,” and the trip takes six months, so it’s “probably not ideal” for humans, the SpaceX CEO said.

Oh, and it “also doesn’t have the capability of getting back to Earth,” he said, stirring laughter from the crowd. “We put that in the fine print!”

SpaceX’s first goal is to establish “cargo flights to Mars that people can count on” before launching a larger spacecraft with people on board.

He was asked about Matt Damon’s movie “The Martian” which Musk said he enjoyed. He also claimed that it was about 80% accurate.