Elon Musk Explains Why SpaceX's Falcon Heavy Core Booster Crashed

Falcon Heavy Launch mission a success? Flat Earth Community thinks it as a hoax by SpaceX

On February 6, SpaceX made history with the largely successful first launch of its Falcon Heavy rocket - and National Geographic was there, right alongside SpaceX CEO Elon Musk.

At this point, you probably also know that while SpaceX tried to land that Falcon Heavy booster on a drone ship in the ocean, that landing failed.

The need for a third drone ship has arisen because of the increasing number of launches SpaceX is managing for NASA and other contractors. To make the Falcon Heavy work, SpaceX had to redesign the center booster completely, rework the control systems, and upgrade the fins that the reusable first stages use to steer so they can land back on Earth.

SpaceX described the Falcon heavy as "the most powerful operational rocket in the world, by a factor of two".

"We tried to cancel the Falcon Heavy program three times at SpaceX, because it [was] way harder than we thought", said Musk in a press briefing after the launch.

The rocket carried a playful payload: Musk's red Roadster, an electric sports auto built by his other company, Tesla. Regarding the damage to the ship, Musk said, "Not enough ignition fluid to light the outer two engines after several three engine relights".

The fix, he said, was "pretty obvious". The side boosters used in the Falcon Heavy launch were previously flown and recovered. Some eight minutes after launch Tuesday, the two side boosters set down in near synchrony on two landing pads at Cape Canaveral. He tweeted that the addition of A Shortfall Of Gravitas would also support busier flight schedules for Falcon 9. "Just Read the Instructions" is in the Pacific for launches from Vandenberg, and "Of Course I Still Love You" in the Atlantic for launches from Cape Canaveral. Even the founder and CEO of SpaceX felt surreal that the Falcon Heavy's launch went nearly flawless and without any glitches.

This payload means that Falcon Heavy offers increased possibilities for SpaceX, including the launch of bigger satellites for United States intelligence and military, launching large batches of satellites (i.e.to help deliver global broadband), sending bigger robots to Mars or the outer planets of Jupiter, Saturn and their moons, and the transportation and launch of huge telescopes.

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