What will spacecraft be like in the future?

Space shuttles will be replaced quite soon with space planes. America is developing a space plane called Venture Star. It could cost 70% less to fly than the shuttle. Venture Stars could make it possible to reach orbit cheaply, and even to build other ships in space. Then we could make giant transporter ships to carry people to Mars.

Amazing! You might travel to space on a laser beam! Scientists in America are testing a laser that heats a pocket of air under a spacecraft. The very hot air pushes the craft upwards. No energy is wasted lifting heavy fuel off the ground.

Will we ever visit other solar systems?

The nearest star to our Sun is 4.3 light years away. The shuttle would take 158,000 years to get there! We will need amazing new spacecraft before we visit other solar systems.

Will we colonise Mars?

Robots might be able to build a Mars base. Humans would have to wear space suits outside, but would live in airtight habitats, with plants and animals. Genetically modified plants could grow, which would create breathable air and water, making the whole planet habitable.

Picture Credit : Google