SpaceX has announced it is building the first commercial spacecraft to transport astronauts to the Red Planet.
The company’s chief executive, Elon Musk, said the spacecraft, named Red Dragon, will use the same engine as the Dragon spacecraft used to send humans to the moon.
Musk said the rocket is designed to take off from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida in 2021 and land on the surface of the moon before returning to Earth.
The mission is to send astronauts to an orbit of 1,800 kilometers (600 miles), the highest in space, according to SpaceX.
The space exploration company said the Red Dragon is expected to be reusable and has a crew of four.
The first crewed mission to the Moon, which would take place in 2020, would be in 2024, and the second mission would be back in 2023.