In a week that saw Congressional hearings into UFO sightings, it’s perhaps not surprising that the world’s richest man has his eye out for unusual visitors as well.
In particular, he outlined plans for his Starlink satellite communications system and longer term goals for permanent human bases on the moon and Mars.
Musk’s SpaceX rockets recently completed back-to-back launches to add more satellites to the growing constellation he is assembling in low-earth orbit. The Starlink service is already available in more than a dozen countries, and recently has played a key role in Ukraine’s defense against Vladimir Putin’s invasion of the country.
Updated satellites will offer even speedier service which will eventually be available everywhere in the world.
Musk told the panelists that profits from the Starlink system could be used to help fund development of a permanent base on the moon.
As he has done in the past, Musk outlined his vision of turning human beings into a “spacefaring” civilization, arguing that the audacious goal would serve to inspire young people to “Find out what’s out there, what’s the meaning of life, where the aliens are.” He added that “hopefully they’re friendly.”
He noted that the moon could be home to some "epic" telescopes which could be used to search for alien life.
To be sure, the serial entrepreneur acknowledges that “I’ve not seen any evidence of aliens.” He added that “I’ll be the first to tweet about it…I will definitely tell you if there’s aliens.”
Musk speculated that “If we found aliens, probably SpaceX would get a ton more revenue.” That’s because “people are going to be like ‘Man! Aliens! We’d better upgrade our technology pronto because what if they’re unfriendly?’”
Although Musk touts the idea of humanity venturing into space as an undeniably good thing, it remains to be seen whether the rest of the universe is ready, or even interested in dealing with so litigious and quarrelsome a form of life.
Tesla shares slumped to a fresh 2022 low Friday as CEO Elon Musk promised that the clean-energy carmaker's fortunes were on his mind '24/7' as lurid headlines continue to dog the world's richest man. The stock closed regular trade down 6.43% at $663.90.