Elon Musk’s huge Falcon Heavy rocket set for launch
Elon Musk is attempting to fly the world’s most powerful rocket with his own sports car on the top. The US entrepreneur’s Falcon Heavy launcher is designed to have twice the lifting capacity of any other vehicle, but because of the historic high failure rate of maiden flights, only a dummy payload is being risked. Mr Musk has decided this should be his old cherry-red Tesla roadster with a space-suited mannequin strapped in the driver’s seat. David Bowie’s classic hit Space Oddity will be looping on the radio as the car is hurled into an elliptical orbit that stretches out to Mars’ orbit around the Sun.
“[The roadster will] get about 400 million km away from Earth, and it’ll be doing 11km/s,” he told reporters in a briefing on Monday. “We estimate it will be in that orbit for several hundred million years, maybe in excess of a billion years.”