President Trump wants to send a manned space flight to Mars during his time in office – which is about a decade faster than most estimates say is possible.
In cringe-worthy video call to the International Space Station the President asked astronaut Peggy Whitson when she thinks a manned trip to Mars would be possible. Whitson said the current estimates of such a trip being possible in the 2030s seems right to her, but that doesn’t sit right with Trump.
“We want to try and do it during my first term or at worst during my second term,” Trump said, “so we’re going to have to speed that up a little, OK?”
Here’s the full, rather baffling transcript:
TRUMP: “Tell me: Mars, what do you see a timing for actually sending humans to Mars? Is there a schedule and when would you see that happening?”
WHITSON: “Well, I think as your bill directed, it’ll be approximately in the 2030s. As I mentioned, we actually are building hardware to test the new heavy launch vehicle, and this vehicle will take us further than we’ve ever been away from this planet.
“So, unfortunately space flight takes a lot of time and money so getting there will require some international cooperation to get the — it to be a planet-wide approach in order to make it successful just because it is a very expensive endeavor. But it is so worthwhile doing.”
TRUMP: “Well, we want to try and do it during my first term or, at worst, during my second term, so we’ll have to speed that up a little bit, okay?”
WHITSON: “We’ll do our best.”