After everyone saw the movie, “The Martian” last summer with Matt Damon, it seemed like living on Mars could be a very real possibility. Hey, if a botanist (plant guy) could do it why aren’t we there yet? Hey NASA, let’s get cracking on this one! Right?
Well, yes and no. NASA is truly on the forefront of getting a spacecraft with human astronauts on Mars, but it’s not going to be quite as soon as you might think. This is a journey that NASA has been carefully studying for the past 40 years, so they are on track to make it happen.
According to NASA’s “Journey To Mars” statement in 2014, they are on target to land on Mars sometime in the mid-2030. You can even get updates on their progress to this goal on their Twitter page. They have 16.2 million followers anxiously awaiting any and all updates about when life on Mars will be a reality.
Here’s the hard fact about where Mars is located in relation to Earth. It’s FAR. Plus, it changes all the time due to theirs and our rotation.
In the year 2020, we are on target to be 38.6 million miles from Mars.
That’s actually much closer than where we are from them right now in 2016 at 46.8 million miles. That’s practically a ten million mile difference. It would stop the astronauts from saying, “are we there yet” ten thousand times on the journey.
You know how long that journey would take? Seven months. Yep, that’s right. It’s that far away that with the capabilities we have in space travel currently, it would take a whopping seven whole months to get there. Maybe even eight months.
The most efficient path to take is through the Hohmann Transfer Orbit, which is probably what Matt Damon’s crew took to get to Mars in that fictional movie. Our robotic spacecraft is already on the “Red Planet” in real life, so it’s only a matter of time before we actually send a human there. We’ll just have to be a little more patient in the meantime.