SpaceX is getting ready to launch its massive Falcon Heavy rocket

James Marshall
January 3, 2018

NASA also has transferred numerous former shuttle facilities to commercial tenants or government agencies such as the Air Force or Space Florida.

"I love the thought of a vehicle drifting apparently endlessly through space and perhaps being discovered by an alien race millions of years in the future", Musk wrote.

If successful, the Falcon Heavy will become the most powerful rocket in operation, and according to Nasa will have twice the lifting power of the next most powerful rocket.

However, the site says 'a person familiar with the matter told The Verge Saturday evening that the payload is in fact real'.

At the risk of being labelled an eccentric billionaire, Musk has teased that the first payload will be a red Tesla Roadster electric vehicle (made by another of Musk's many companies).

The mission marks SpaceX's most ambitious project to date. In addition, it was also published video of bringing the Falcon Heavy in a vertical position.

It was initially slated to launch in November, but is now set to take place this Thursday, with the launch window opening at 8pm (EST).

However, in an email to Aviation Week, SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell revealed the delay - which now appears to have been overruled by Musk.

SpaceX made history in March when it achieved the first-ever reuse of an orbital-class booster, which CEO Elon Musk had deemed 'a huge revolution for spaceflight'.

'We should be able to static fire this year and fly a couple of weeks right after that'.

The Tesla founder posted a series of images and information to Twitter and Instagram, showing the Falcon Heavy rocket, which contains 27 engines, at Cape Canaveral ahead of an engine test and then full test flight early next year.

Last month, Musk unveiled the 2017 Tesla Roadster, billed as the fastest production vehicle ever made.

Musk, who aspires to colonize the "Red Planet" in the coming decade, wants to land at least two of the spacecraft on Mars by 2022, according to CNN.

Zuma will lift off from KSC's historic Pad 39A, which once hosted space shuttle and Apollo moon mission launches.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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