SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said there's a "70 per cent chance" he'll personally travel to Mars.
Musk, 47, told Axios' new program on HBO that he believes Mars exploration is more than just a fantasy dreamed up by the super-wealthy who may want to use space travel as an "escape hatch".
"Your probability of dying on Mars is much higher than Earth," he told Axios' Mike Allen.
"It's gonna be hard. There's a good chance of death, going in a little (sic) can through deep space."
"We think you can come back but we're not sure. Now, does that sound like an escape hatch for rich people?"
Musk said that while flying to Mars would be difficult, landing on the Red Planet may pose even more challenges.
"You might land successfully, and once you land successfully, you'll be working non-stop to build the base," he suggested.
"So, you know, not much time for leisure. And even after doing all this, it's a very harsh environment. So … there's a good chance you die there."
Still, Musk said that advancements in technology may allow for a flight to Mars within as soon as seven years, with a ticket price of "around a couple of hundred thousand dollars."
And despite the risks, Musk asserted that he would go without hesitation.
"There's lots of people who climb mountains. People die on Mount Everest all the time."
"They like doing it for the challenge."
Musk has spoken often of colonizing Mars with his company SpaceX, and has voiced concern about a potential backup plan for humanity if Earth eventually becomes an uninhabitable wasteland.
Business Insider's Dave Mosher compiled a speculative timeline on how SpaceX' Mars exploration would come to be.
And over more than a decade, SpaceX has developed several impressive aerospace systems: Falcon 1, its first orbital rocket; Grasshopper, a small self-landing test rocket; Falcon 9, a reusable orbital-class launcher; Dragon, a spaceship for cargo and soon NASA astronauts; and Falcon Heavy, a super-heavy-lift launcher.
Last week, the Washington Post reported that NASA will launch a safety review of SpaceX and Boeing, two companies it has contracted to fly astronauts to the International Space Station.
The move follows Musk's appearance on the "Joe Rogan Experience" podcast in September where he was seen on the livestream program smoking weed and drinking whiskey.
This article was originally published by Business Insider.
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