Falcon Heavy completes static fire test

SpaceX's Falcon Heavy completes hold-down firing test

Once it is deemed ready to launch, the Falcon Heavy will be the most powerful operational rocket in the world.

Shortly after the extended test firing, Elon Musk took to Twitter to announce that it had been successful, as well as a launch date within "a week or so". "Generated quite a thunderhead of steam", Musk tweeted about an hour after the test. "Launching in a week or so".

The Falcon Heavy is basically three Falcon 9 rockets - SpaceX's workhorse of a launcher - strapped together, giving it the ability to launch larger payloads than SpaceX has ever been able to haul before, to destinations like Mars. It is likely that the main goal of Falcon Heavy's extended static fire was to ensure that SpaceX had developed a safe and functional method of igniting all 27 engines without damaging itself, a real risk from the torque of each engine's turbopump operating in the same orientation.

But hype surrounding the upcoming demonstration flight has been partially energized by a special payload encapsulated in the rocket's protective nose cone, or fairing - Musk's personal 2008 Tesla Roadster, an all-electric sports auto, will be hurtled into deep space. If the SES-16/GovSat 1 mission delays, so will Falcon Heavy.

As with all static fires of flight-proven boosters, the static fire was anticipated to last 7 seconds from the time of engine ignition to engine shutdown.

Swiss mummy is UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson's 'great-grandmummy'
Although the woman was laid in a 16th century coffin, there was no gravestone marking her name, making her identification hard . Bischoff's relationship to the Johnson family was confirmed by records of births, deaths and marriages.

The Falcon Heavy in early February is based on public statements by Elon Musk and Gwynne Shotwell, SpaceX's President and COO. But Musk's confirmation gives us something to look forward to that's far more specific.

The SpaceX CEO has said the auto will remain in "deep space for a billion years or so if it doesn't blow up on ascent".

SpaceX expects the Falcon Heavy to eventually ferry crew and cargo between Earth and Mars.

Launch viewing tickets through Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex went on sale Thursday and quickly sold out for the closest "Feel the Heat" spots at the Apollo/Saturn V Center.

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