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SpaceX To Launch Tesla Roadster In Mars Orbit (Really)

26 Января 2018

Falcon Heavy's static fire took place at Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center, where the launch should take place before its inaugural flight in the next few weeks.

In a static fire test, all of the Heavy's 27 Merlin engines are fired up to make sure they can ignite properly. While the two side boosters are reused from earlier Falcon 9 launches, the core is all new, as is the second stage.

Its collection of 27 engines generated five million pounds of thrust which will be used to send a Tesla Roadster into an orbit around Mars. The long-anticipated test flight will carry up a Tesla Roadster belonging to Elon Musk, who heads both the rocket and electric auto companies.

On Wednesday, 24 January, 2018, the spacefaring giant took a major leap and conducted the crucial static-fire test of Falcon Heavy.

SpaceX says it has the most powerful rocket in the world.

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He tweeted: 'Falcon Heavy launching from same @NASA pad as the Saturn V Apollo 11 moon rocket.

Apparently, things went well with the test firing. Musk hopes to use the Falcon Heavy to send tourists around the Moon, and to send supplies to Mars for a manned mission. Most recently, the rocket went through a series of "fit checks" (test runs of rollout and erection on the launch pad) and a wet dress rehearsal, which saw the rocket fully loaded with liquid fuel. So it's not really a surprise that the Falcon Heavy's development has seen multiple delays.

As for the roadster payload, many initial launch tests boost dead weight in the form of concrete ballast, but ever the iconoclast, Musk decided a vehicle would be fun. Musk said the first Falcon Heavy's engines will be throttled to 92 percent of full power. "It also impacts critical missions for our customers, including important worldwide allies scheduled to launch shortly from Cape Canaveral and Vandenberg Air Force Base, as well as upcoming missions this spring to resupply the global Space Station".

If successful the red sports vehicle will end up in a long, oval loop around the sun, travelling as far as the orbit of Mars. That's enough to get 140,000 pounds into Earth's orbit, a little under three times the payload of a Falcon 9. (I call Shotgun!) It's kind of silly to use a rocket to send a auto around the Sun, but it will generate publicity. He said last July that there's "a real good chance that that vehicle does not make it to orbit. I would consider even that a win".

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SpaceX To Launch Tesla Roadster In Mars Orbit (Really)