Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk unveiled a new SpaceX spacecraft designed to carry a crew and cargo to the moon or Mars and land back on Earth. In fact, it could carry crew and cargo to literally anywhere in Solar System. Musk said on Saturday in a speech that was live-streamed from SpaceX’s launch facility in Texas that SpaceX's Starship is expected to take off for the first time in about one or two months and reach 65,000 feet before landing back on Earth.
Musk said it’s essential for the viability of space travel to be able to reuse spacecraft and that it’s essential to take steps to extend consciousness beyond our planet. A crowd gathered and watched as Musk took a stage and spoke in front of the giant spacecraft. Musk also said Saturday marked the 11th anniversary of a SpaceX rocket reaching orbit for the first time.
11 years ago today, we launched our first successful mission. To date, we’ve completed 78 launches and have developed the world’s only operational reusable orbital class rockets and spacecraft—capable of launching to space, returning to Earth, and flying again pic.twitter.com/5L0q9PJ90P— SpaceX (@SpaceX) September 29, 2019
Elon Musk unveiled the latest iteration of SpaceX's newly assembled Starship vehicle to launch humans to the moon and Mars. Musk showed animations of Starship landing on the moon and Mars at SpaceX’s rocket development site late on Saturday in the remote village of Boca Chica, Texas. Musk predicted that the Starship's first orbital flight could come in the next six months. Musk hopes to launch space missions with humans aboard in 2020.
Starship is designed to carry dozens of humans to the moon and Mars. It stands 387 feet tall and joins the SpaceX’s existing lineup of reusable launch vehicles. Last year, Musk named Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa as Starship’s first private passenger. Musk’s crewed mission to the moon aligns with NASA’s plan to send humans on the moon by 2024 under its Artemis program.
"This is basically the holy grail of space,” Musk said. “The critical breakthrough that’s needed for us to become a space-faring civilization is to make space travel like air travel."
(With agency inputs)