NASA and several private space companies are working hard to take man to Mars, with the idea being to establish a habitat on the Red Planet and eventually colonize it in the future. Much of this has already been done in some excellent Hollywood productions but it’s still far from reality. United States Congress does want to nudge NASA along to achieve this goal which is why it has given the space agency $55 million to build a habitat to house astronauts on Mars by 2018.

That’s a healthy increase in the budget for NASA, and according to a report by SpaceNews, $55 million of that bump in the budget is meant for the development of a deep space habitat which will be used to house astronauts when they eventually make their way to Mars.

NASA has been given until 2018 to create a prototype of the “habitation module,” the agency is also required to update Congress six months after it begins working on this project. It would certainly welcome the money but would now have to pick up the pace in order to comply with Congress’s demands.

Bigelow Aerospace and Boeing are just some of the private companies that are also working with NASA to develop deep space habitats. It’s going to be a long and arduous process, we’ll have to wait and see if NASA is able to meet the 2018 deadline for a prototype set by the Congress.

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