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Nobody is going to Mars in 2019

Welcome back, Mars fans! Last week's space news was dominated by two big stories, which quickly got m
Nobody is going to Mars in 2019
By Joost Schuur • Issue #5 • View online
Welcome back, Mars fans! Last week’s space news was dominated by two big stories, which quickly got misrepresented by parts of the press, who either didn’t dig deep enough into the story or were just looking for an attention grabbing headline. Elon Musk hit the stage at SXSW and in his typical, off the cuff style said a lot of things about our need to expand to Mars and how SpaceX is working to get us here. He said their next rocket design, the BFR will make ‘short … up and down flights’ probably sometime in 2019, which then got turned into headlines that SpaceX was sending rockets to Mars next year.  Not quite! Elon was referring to test flights on Earth for 2019.
Then Russian president Putin boasted that they would send a mission to Mars in 2019 and that morphed into them sending Russians to the Red Planet (heh) that year. Sure, they’re a key part of the European Space Agency’s 2020 ExoMars mission, but 2019 isn’t even an optimal launch window to send a rocket there, and Russia’s last four attempts to get to Mars in the last 20 years have all failed. Space is hard. Words are easy.
Even Donald Trump joined in, claiming the US would go to Mars ’very soon’. Well, technically that’s true, since NASA’s Mars InSight lander launches May 5th this year, but if he’s talking about anything else beyond the 2020 Mars Rover, Congress needs to back those bold claims up with funding and we also need to fill those vacant senior NASA administration slots. Even optimistically speaking, we’re nowhere near putting boots on the ground during Donald’s Trump presidency.
At least all these bold claims and plans are starting to fuel a new space race. Meanwhile, among all the bluster, China is quietly working away at their own 2020 Mars mission.
If you can’t wait that long, you can build your very own Mars colony today, in Paradox Interactive’s Mars colony sim game Surviving Mars, out this week on consoles and PC/Mac. 
Last but not least, RIP Stephen Hawkins, who also spoke passionately about humanity’s need to settle on other planets to survive.
PS: I hadn’t been to NASA’s own Mars Exploration Program site in a while. It’s pretty neat, especially the multimedia section!
PPS: Big thanks to Martijn for featuring this humble little newsletter already. Please check out Revue if you’re looking for a way to run a content curation newsletter of your own.

Surviving Mars - Release Trailer
Surviving Mars - Release Trailer
Exploration
China on track to launch Mars probe in 2020
Dear Elon Musk... Please send me to Mars. The rewards would be worth the risk of death
Next NASA Mars Rover Reaches Key Manufacturing Milestone
SpaceX Sees Direct Route To Mars, Boeing Doesn't; Here's Why
Beautiful Mars
Rich in History, Rich in Clay. Terrain near Mawrth Vallis.
Rich in History, Rich in Clay. Terrain near Mawrth Vallis.
Science & Tech
Mars 2020: The Red Planet's Next Rover
Rare Metals On Mars And Earth Implicate Colossal Impacts
From craft store to spacecraft: Simple fabric will help us land on Mars
Ask Ethan: Why Does Mars Have A Bright, Red Sky?
CubeSats prepped at Cal Poly to be included in mission to Mars
What Happens to Your Body If You Die on Mars? - YouTube
What Happens to Your Body If You Die on Mars? - YouTube
Can We Colonize Mars?
Wind on Mars and the Huygens-Fresnel Principle
Space Policy
Mars Anlog
Austr. Space Forum
Want to be part of our next AMADEE-2020 mission? Get your Mars rover analogue design ready and register now for the biggest space-robotics event. ERC Student and ERC Pro challenge is still open. Deadline 31st March 2018 👉https://t.co/IQuFu2E0RA 🚀🔴 #ERC18 #ERC2018 https://t.co/DLkSOEe2l1
5:00 PM - 14 Mar 2018
Popular Culture
39 Days to Mars arrives on Windows, Linux and Mac this April
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Joost Schuur

All the fresh dirt on the planet Mars. Curated stories lovingly crafted by @joostschuur @martiansoil.

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