Sci-tech

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk says 'absurd' Starman launch boosts curiosity

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk says 'absurd' Starman launch boosts curiosity

After years of waiting and months of delays, SpaceX finally launched the Falcon Heavy rocket into the skies of Florida yesterday.

The world's most powerful rocket has blasted off from Cape Canaveral, sending a vehicle into an orbit that could last a billion years.

After the successful launch Musk said: "It seems surreal to me". According to Musk this is double the performance of the world's most powerful rocket and done at one third of the cost. The rocket had a successful stage and boost separation and two of the reusable boosters landed in flawless sync at Space X's landing zones. It is the company's most powerful rocket yet, a combination of three Falcon 9 rockets that gives the combined muscle of 27 Merlin rocket engines.

There was no immediate word on whether the center booster managed to touch down on a floating platform 300 miles offshore.

Falcon Heavy's upper stage and its Tesla Roadster vehicle payload would perform a "cruise" phase to high Earth orbit for six hours.

A rocket operated by the aerospace company SpaceX exploded on the launch pad at Cape Canaveral where it was being test-fired ahead of a launch. Liftoff is now scheduled for sometime after 3 p.m. from Florida's Kennedy Space Center.

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The successful test flight of Falcon Heavy, the super rocket manufactured by US space flight company SpaceX, could revolutionize the space industry one day.

Putting the red Roadster in the Falcon Heavy Rocket wasn't just the best marketing stunt the world has ever seen.

Whether the auto makes it onto its planned trajectory will not become clear for several more hours, SpaceX said. That means the Falcon Heavy can put around 140,000 pounds of cargo into lower Earth orbit, more than twice as much weight as any other operational rocket.

But what will people most likely remember from today?

The company had never really planned to put the auto in an orbit directly around the planet Mars the way the moon orbits earth, despite Musk's claim that its "destination is Mars orbit".