Musk's rocket company scheduled the debut launch of its long-awaited Falcon Heavy for January 2018. The business tycoon has also divulged that Falcon 9's more powerful sibling will carry his personal midnight cherry Tesla Roadster to space.
In what can only be described as "the freaky news of the day", Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla has announced that the next SpaceX mission rocket will carry a very unique payload - his own first generation Tesla Roadster.
Playing David Bowie's "Space Oddity" as it heads into space, the $200,000 electric sports auto will travel on an egg-shaped orbit for eternity, looping from the orbit of Earth to the orbit of Mars, Musk said.
The vehicle "will be in deep space for a billion years or so if it doesn't blow up on ascent", Musk wrote.
Elon Musk. Thaddeus Cesari
But if SpaceX is open for other ideas, a crash effort by scientists could send a 230-pound probe launched from the Falcon Heavy to fly by Oumuamua, a newly discovered and first asteroid spotted that comes from another star, Andreas Hein of the Initiative for Interstellar Studies told BuzzFeed News. Only the Saturn V moon rocket, last flown in 1973, delivered more payload to orbit.
The rocket, which uses 27 Merlin engines (in three blocks of 9 engines), will generate 5 million pounds of thrust.
It will launch from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The first test, which will precede the attempt to fire a Tesla Roadster into Mars orbit, will be a "static fire" in which all of the engines are activated at once.
Elon Musk, founder and CEO of the spaceflight company, said the rocket will launch in January from the Apollo 11 pad at Cape Canaveral. "Guaranteed to be exciting, one way or another". The red Tesla Roadster will be sent to space on a mission to the red planet, Mars. The mission would identify hazards, confirm water resources, and start creating the infrastructure necessary for a second trip in 2024 carrying cargo and crew, according to Tech Times.