SpaceX has done it again.
The Falcon Heavy took off yesterday evening (6 February) at 8.45pm IST from NASA's Launch Pad 39A - the same one used by Apollo 11 - with more than 2m kg of thrust from its three core Falcon 9 boosters, containing nine rockets each.
Thousands of onlookers in Florida could be heard cheering on the company's livestream, which was viewed by about 3 million people.
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Centre core of Falcon Heavy rocket hit water at 480 km/h and took out two engines of ocean landing pad, Musk says.
Yes, David Bowie's "Life on Mars?" was playing in the background.
Not only did the rocket lift a red sports auto into orbit with a dummy "Starman" at the wheel two of the three boosters came back and landed upright at Cape Canaveral.
"Most of our engineering resources will be dedicated to BFR, and so that will make things go quite quickly", Musk said. At the wheel is a dummy dressed in a spacesuit.
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As part of his mission to Mars trip experiment, SpaceX launched a red Tesla Roadster convertible into Earth's orbit, whereupon they will try and get it to Mars. The stunning photographs of the flawless launch of Tesla Roadster with live views showing the auto in Earth's orbit and extending into asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter farther in the Solar System are bound to leave you thrilled.
Would the auto and mannequin, attached to the Falcon Heavy's second stage, survive an experimental 6-hour coast phase that would send it through Earth's radiation-flooded Van Allen belts?
The idea was to send the rocket - and the Roadster - around an elliptical orbit as far out as Mars, but only a few hours ago Musk tweeted that the "third burn" was successful, and the rocket exceeded the intended Mars orbit.
SpaceX's success has demonstrated Musk's capabilities in putting objects into space.
Now, SpaceX routinely puts used boosters back to work.
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