Now don't get me wrong, a publicity stunt wasn't the actual goal of SpaceX's launching the Tesla Roadster on the Falcon Heavy rocket.
On Tuesday the rocket did just that, with cargo not quite that heavy but perfectly created to get everyone talking - on board was one of one of Elon Musk's electric sportscars.
With David Bowie's Space Oddity playing on the stereo and a dummy - named "Starman" - in the passenger seat, Musk's Roadster actually overshot its original destination of Mars and is now headed to the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.
SpaceX has been working on the Falcon Heavy rocket for years and they needed to do a demonstration launch anyway. This target has however been pushed back many times by this stage. He's in charge of the carmaker as well as the private space company. The Falcon Heavy, developed at zero cost to the taxpayer, would charge NASA approximately $100M per launch.
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The reception was held at a hotel in Yongpyeong, just east of the host city of the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games. Outside the stadium, there were anti-unification protests over North Korea's involvement in the games.
More: A Tesla Roadster in orbit.
"I think it looks so ridiculous and impossible".
People in Kharkiv, Kyiv and other cities gathered around screens at home or in pubs and bars to watch as the rocket dashed into space. SpaceX company has been preparing the launch for 7 years. The Ukrainian company provided its An-124-100 Ruslan aircraft for transportation of heavy rocket components to Florida. Musk's Space X launched an interesting rocket and we are wide-eyed with amazement. The company said in February past year that the rocket would send two people on a trip around the moon, but Musk said there's been a change of plans.
In the meantime, with the Heavy demo out of the way, Musk said SpaceX is putting its commercial crew effort for NASA front and center. Once fully proven as a flight-ready vehicle, its re-usability should dramatically bring down the cost of space launches (SpaceX is already rapidly driving costs down). A first test flight for BFR could happen in "three or four years". USA astronauts have been riding Russian rockets, costing taxpayers tens of millions of dollars a seat, to get to the space station since the shuttle program ended in 2011. "But really we need to be way bigger than that". These engines are said to be more powerful, reliable, and efficient than their predecessors, but even with these advancements, Musk's new platform will require 31 of them to get the behemoth into the sky.
"We want a new space race, " he said.