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Neil Degrasse Tyson says he will travel with SpaceX if Elon Musk sends his mom


Neil deGrasse Tyson is willing to fly to Mars with SpaceX, as long as company founder and CEO Elon Musk meets a few key conditions.

“I really like Earth. So any space trip I take, I’m double-checking that there’s sufficient funds for me to return,” Tyson wrote during a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” (AMA) session on Sunday (April 2).”Also, I’m not taking that trip until Elon Musk send[s] his mother and brings her back alive. Then I’m good for it.”

Tyson was responding to a question about SpaceX’s historic launch last week, during which a used Falcon 9 rocket first stage helped send the SES-10 communications satellite to orbit. The questioner also asked if Tyson would ever consider going on a one-way Mars trip.

SpaceX aims to help colonize Mars, and the company regards the development of fully and rapidly reusable rockets as central to that goal. Such technology could spur a spaceflight revolution by slashing launch costs, Musk has said.

Tyson said he’s a fan of the company’s focus on reusable boosters.

“Any demonstration of rocket reusability is a good thing,” the astrophysicist and science communicator  wrote in the AMA. “When we fly on a Boeing 747 across great distances, we don’t throw it away and roll out a new one. Reusability is arguably the most fundamental feature of affordable expensive things.”

Seen on Space.com