It is designed to deliver a maximum payload to low-Earth orbit of 64 tonne
United States’s popular entrepreneur and CEO Tesla Inc. Elon Musk has launched his new rocket, the Falcon Heavy, from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
A heavy-duty rocket from Elon Musk’s private company launches for the first time and aims to make spaceflight cheaper and easier
US entrepreneur Elon Musk has launched his new rocket, the Falcon Heavy, from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
The Falcon Heavy’s first flight marks an important milestone in spaceflight, the first time a rocket this powerful has been sent into space by a private company rather than a government space agency.
The Falcon Heavy now holds the title of the world’s most powerful rocket, and its launch marks the first time a vehicle this massive has ever been sent up by a commercial company.
It boasts 27 engines, more than any other working rocket has ever used, which together create a combined 5 million pounds of thrust at liftoff and the third booster was due to settle on a drone ship stationed several hundred KM out at sea.
By then, the upper-stage of the Falcon Heavy, with its Tesla cargo, was heading on a trajectory that would hopefully take it towards Mars’ orbit.
Thousands of onlookers in Florida could be heard cheering on the company’s live stream, which was viewed by about 3 million people.
After launch, Musk tweeted that it had successfully ignited its engine and raised its orbit as intended.
He further said such performance is slightly more than double that of the world’s next most powerful rocket, the Delta IV Heavy – but at one-third of the cost.
The company made the world takes notice when it proved it can safely return first-stage rocket boosters to Earth with its Falcon 9 rocket, which the company has used for more than 40 missions dating back to 2012.
Jerry Carr, an astronaut on the final mission to Skylab in 1973 that brought the curtain down on the Saturn Vera, said the launch was “a hummer”, and praised Musk for opening a new frontier in space.