“If one can figure out how to effectively reuse rockets just like airplanes, the cost of access to space will be reduced by as much as a factor of a hundred.” – Elon Musk
The 46-year-old billionaire is ready for his next milestone – launch of the first test flight of SpaceX‘s new giant rocket next month, company officials reportedly confirmed on Saturday.
In a series of tweets on Friday night, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk confirmed that the company’s first test of its Falcon Heavy rocket will take place in January 2018.
He also tweeted playfully that the rocket’s payload will be his “midnight cherry Tesla Roadster playing Space Oddity. Destination is Mars orbit.”
He said the car will play David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” full blast on the way to Mars, if the rocket doesn’t explode during liftoff.
It is a significant part of the plans initiated by Mr Musk to “make human life multi-planetary” which involves building a self-sustaining, one-million-person civilization on Mars, as announced last September and published in his book titled Making Humans a Multi-Planetary Species.
According to the company, The Falcon Heavy will be the world’s most powerful rocket by a factor or two, and capable of lifting nearly 120,000 pounds into Earth orbit.
SpaceX also said that the Falcon Heavy is also most likely the rocket that would take the two undisclosed passengers who have paid a deposit to fly around the Moon in late 2018.
The first test flight of the Falcon Heavy will be next month on the same launch pad that Apollo 11 took off from on Cape Kennedy. More details will be published about the launch as they are disclosed by the company.
Watch how SpaceX successfully landed a rocket on a drone-ship:
Elon Musk is the founder, CEO, and CTO of SpaceX; a co-founder, Series A investor, CEO, and product architect of Tesla Inc.; co-chairman of OpenAI; and founder and CEO of Neuralink. He is also a co-founder and former chairman of SolarCity, co-founder of Zip2, and founder of X.com, which merged with Confinity and took the name PayPal. As of October 2017, Musk has an estimated net worth of $20.8 billion.