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In a post on Twitter Musk appeared to be pretty annoyed with the FAA after it refused to approve a test flight for SpaceX's Starship.
The craft was set and ready to go on the launchpad but never got the thumbs up from the FAA, prompting Musk to slam the 'fundamentally broken' system, which he claimed was stopping humans from getting to Mars.
Unlike its aircraft division, which is fine, the FAA space division has a fundamentally broken regulatory structure.- Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 28, 2021
Their rules are meant for a handful of expendable launches per year from a few government facilities. Under those rules, humanity will never get to Mars.
He tweeted: "Unlike its aircraft division, which is fine, the FAA space division has a fundamentally broken regulatory structure.
"Their rules are meant for a handful of expendable launches per year from a few government facilities.
"Under those rules, humanity will never get to Mars."
Musk's frustration comes just weeks after he announced he felt confident humans would be on Mars within the next six years.
The SpaceX founder spoke at the Axel Springer Award ceremony in Berlin in December where he said: "I feel fairly confident about six years from now.
"The Earth-Mars synchronisation occurs roughly every 26 months, so we had one this year, in the summer. That means in roughly two years there'll be another one, and then two years after that.
"So I think six years from now, highly confident, if we get lucky, maybe four years. And then we want to try to send an un-crewed vehicle there in two years."
Musk added that he might make his first trip into orbit in 'two to three years', but his priority is getting the infrastructure in place to allow 'a lot of people to go to Mars and make life interplanetary, and to have a base on the moon'.
He added: "I think it's important that we aspire to have a self-sustaining city on Mars as soon as possible."
Musk has previously said he reckons people will live inside glass domes at first, before eventually terraforming.
Posting on Twitter, he explained: "Life in glass domes at first. Eventually, terraformed to support life, like Earth.
"Terraforming will be too slow to be relevant in our lifetime. However, we can establish a human base there in our lifetime.
"At least a future spacefaring civilisation - discovering our ruins - will be impressed humans got that far."
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