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OceanGate co-founder wants to send 1,000 people to Venus

A recent interview with Guillermo Söhnlein, a co-founder of OceanGate Expeditions, revealed his ambitious vision for the future of human space exploration.

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Söhnlein, who is also the founder and chairman of the Space Commodities Exchange, said he wants to establish a floating colony on Venus by 2050, where 1,000 people could live in the planet’s atmosphere.

Venus is often called Earth’s twin because of its similar size and mass, but it is also a hostile environment for life. The surface temperature is hot enough to melt lead, the atmospheric pressure is 90 times that of Earth, and sulfuric acid rains from the clouds.

However, Söhnlein believes that there is a habitable zone about 30 miles above the surface, where the temperature and pressure are more moderate and where humans could survive with adequate protection.

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Söhnlein’s plan is to design a space station that could float in the Venusian clouds and withstand the corrosive effects of sulfuric acid. He said he thinks this is less aspirational than putting a million people on Mars by 2050, which is the goal of SpaceX founder Elon Musk.

Söhnlein’s statement comes at a difficult time for OceanGate Expeditions, the company he co-founded in 2009 with Stockton Rush. OceanGate operates submersibles that take passengers on deep-sea expeditions, including to the Titanic shipwreck site.

On June 18, one of its submersibles, Titan, imploded during a descent in the Atlantic Ocean, killing all five people on board, including Rush. The cause of the accident is still under investigation, but some former employees have raised concerns about the safety and certification of the submersible.

Söhnlein said he was devastated by the loss of his friend and colleague, but he also said that explorers must take calculated risks in endeavors that push boundaries. He said he believes that the tragedy should not deter humans from continuing to investigate carbon fiber-hulled submersibles as a way to reach the bottom of the ocean.

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Jake Carter

Jake Carter is a researcher and a prolific writer who has been fascinated by science and the unexplained since childhood. He is always eager to share his findings and insights with the readers of anomalien.com, a website he created in 2013.