There is a next-generation space race brewing, as government space agencies and private companies set their sights on the Red Planet of Mars.
Even though the private sector has greatly aided NASA, which is without a space shuttle - and has fought in recent years for every penny in its budget - there doesn't seem to be a realistic way to reach Mars without support from NASA: "No commercial company without the support of NASA and government is going to get to Mars," said Charles Bolden, NASA administrator, in a recent statement published by Engadget.
NASA would like to send a manned mission to Mars, especially after recent findings offer insight that large bodies of water once existed on its surface. NASA's biggest ambition is to reach Mars, with researchers interested in trying to land there sometime in the 2030s - and learn what happened on the planet while it was possibly habitable in its history.
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