NASA and DARPA are teaming up to examine the feasibility of designing a "100-year Starship" capable of interstellar travel.
The project will attempt to create a viable business model and technology portfolio to enable manned space flight between the stars a century from now.
"This goal will [certainly] require sustained investments of intellectual and financial capital from a variety of sources," explained DARPA spokesperson Paul Eremenko.
"[As such], the year-long study aims to develop a construct that will [effectively] incentivize and facilitate private co-investment to ensure continuity of the lengthy technological time horizon needed."
However, Eremenko emphasized that the 100-Year Starship study was about "much more" than building a specific spacecraft or researching any one particular technology.
"We endeavor to excite several generations to commit to R&D breakthrough technologies and cross-cutting innovations across a myriad of disciplines,” he said.
"DARPA also anticipates that the advancements achieved by such technologies will have substantial relevance to Department of Defense (DoD) mission areas including propulsion, energy storage, biology/life support, computing, structures and navigation."