SpaceX To Fly A Private Passenger Around The Moon In Its Big Effin' Rocket

One lucky person is about to “boldly go where no [private passenger] has gone before”. SpaceX recently announced that they have booked the world’s first private flight to the moon.

spacex bfr

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk promised in early 2017 that two tourists would take to the stars by the end of of 2018. Musk hinted that the potential passengers had already paid significant deposits and would begin training for their flights later that year. The passengers were originally supposed to be aboard the Falcon Heavy carrying a Dragon capsule and take off from Kennedy Space Center’s historic Pad 39A near Cape Canaveral.

It now appears that the promised passenger will fly in SpaceX’s to-be-revealed BFR or “Big Falcon Rocket”. The rocket is 348-feet-long, can hold up to 50 tons, and is intended for interplanetary travel and “short hopper flights”. The rocket is currently being built at an 18-acre site in the port of Los Angeles. Musk believes that the rocket will be ready for short flights early next year and longer tests flights within three to four years. It is hoped that the BFR will be used for Mars missions. 

spacex bfr mars

SpaceX will provide more information, including the identity of the fortunate passenger, during a livestream on Monday, September 17th at 9PM EST. When a Twitter user asked Musk if he was the passenger, Musk reportedly tweeted a Japanese flag emoji in response. The passenger will be the first person to visit the moon since the 1970’s. American Astronaut Eugene Cernan was the last person to walk on the moon on December 11th, 1972.

SpaceX is not the only company that is eyeing the moon. Blue Origin, an American aerospace manufacturing company founded by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, plans to create a settlement on the moon. Bezos stated in an interview, "We will have to leave this planet. We’re going to leave it, and it’s going to make this planet better. We’ll come and go, and the people who want to stay, will stay." Bezos has promised that he will do anything to make this dream a reality. It appears that Blue Origin and SpaceX are in a race to get everyday people into space.