Elon Musk - who founded the space exploration firm in 2002, one year before he launched Tesla tweeted photographs of the Falcon Heavy awaiting its big moment inside a SpaceX hangar. But if there was any lingering doubt, he made it clear Friday that SpaceX does indeed intend to launch a Tesla Roadster on the maiden flight of its Falcon Heavy rocket. -, Elon Musk replied with the only sane answer apart from the one we've already touched (media publicity): "I love the thought of a auto drifting apparently endlessly through space and perhaps being discovered by an alien race millions of years in the future". According to Musk, the vehicle will be locked in Mars orbit for 1 billion years playing David Bowie's "Space Oddity" for as long as it has power.
SpaceX's 70-meter-high reusable rocket comprises three booster cores compared to the single one used by its current Falcon 9 rocket, with each core containing nine Merlin engines.
An early 2018 release date for an overhauled navigation system would be in line with the expected mass rollout of the Model 3 compact sedan. The first test launch is scheduled for January 2019. This highly elliptical path goes out to the orbit of Mars, then back to Earth orbit on a near-endless loop (hence the "billion years or so" detail from Musk). Joy Dunn, an engineer at the company, tweeted on December 1 that "this is legit and of course there will be cameras!"
"Just bear in mind that there is a good chance this monster rocket blows up", Musk reportedly told Plait in an email, "so I wouldn't put anything of irreplaceable sentimental value on it".