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When can I buy the Millennium Falcon?

Obsession

I am obsessed with rocket ships. (Why? Because Trump might be the President of the US, and I don't want to be here at that point.)  My hero is Elon Musk (read about his latest adventures in the wait but why blog, by Tim Urban, another one of my heroes!)  Why am I obsessed with rocket ships? Because that's the only way to save your ass when the sh*t relay hits the fan. Some day, when we have an intergalactic civilization, it will be obvious when you have to leave a planet because crazy people are taking over, with a spaceship you can actually do it. Today, not so much.

How Much Can I Pay?

So, when can I buy the Millennium Falcon?  Okay, not me specifically, but someone in my situation. Let's assume you are in the top one percent of the US economy. And let's assume that the economy grows  at 3 percent per year (okay, aggessive but not unbelievable.)  So how much money am I making every year?  According to CNN I should be making $400,00 in 2010 to be in the top 1%.  So assume I want to buy an Recreational Vehicle (the Millennium Falcon is the coolest RV ever, but WTF, going for the win.)  $800,000 in the year 2040 and $1.6 Million in 2064.  A 3 % growth rate means it doubles every 24 years.

How Much Would it Cost?

So how much would the Millennium Falcon cost today?    The Apollo moon landing cost about $12 Billion per launch (in todays dollars) and took place in 1970.  A shuttle launch took about $450 Million in 2010. Today, just to get to low  earth orbit costs $70 million per launch, which is a lot. And Elon has promised to drop it to $500,000 in 2040 to get people to Mars.  If you average those numbers out, it's a fairly steady 12.3% improvement per year.  Not bad.  That means the cost comes done by half every 6 years.

Can I Afford it?

Now let's assume that I'm going to live in the Millenium Falcon, so I can afford to finance it like I do a house, over 30 years, using 25 % of my income (if you live in CA, this will sound familiar.)  So, at a 3 % interest rate I can finance about $5,000,000 in 2040 (10x the trip cost.)  So, it might not be the Millennium Falcon, but certainly you could finance some type of space station vehicle.  Space front property.  Not sure if we'll have faster than light travel (the Alcubierre warp drive might take a little longer to get the kinks out of it) but the ship will be able to take off and land.  Good enough for me. I declare a win.

And Where Can We Go?

And here's where the Millennium Falcon can take you: On the grand tour, and further.
But what we're really aiming for is to have Burning Man on Mars.
So that takes a little bit more effort, but 2040 seems like a great goal!

Photo

Thanks for reading.
 -Dr. Mike

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