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Evan Ackerman

administrator, editor, writer

Evan Ackerman is a native Oregonian who now lives, somewhat unwillingly, in San Francisco. He has a background in creative writing and astrogeology, neither of which are necessarily appropriate for someone who is now a full-time blogger. Evan also writes for IEEE Spectrum's robotics blog, and when he's not parked at his computer with his eyes glazed over, you can find him getting injured on a soccer field or playing bagpipes excellently.

It's about time that we humans get off our butts and start exploring (and colonizing) our solar system in person. The only thing that's really holding us back is access to a fast and/or efficient way of getting where we want to go, but there are a bunch of new technologies in the works that could take us to Mars and beyond, and many of them may realize themselves within the next few decades. Earlier today, Russia announced that they'll be hosting international talks with the US, China, France, Germany and Japan on how to develop (and eventually construct) a nuclear-powered interplanetary spaceship. Nuclear engines are certainly promising, and achievable with current or near-term technology, but they're not the only way to go. Here's a look at 11 more or less realistic ways of traveling around our solar system.