SpaceX Boasts Successful First Stage Testing Of ‘World’s Most Powerful Rocket’

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When Elon Musk isn’t forecasting the downfall of humanity due to the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) or moving in the mainstream market with Tesla’s Model 3 electric vehicle (EV), he has his mind on SpaceX. SpaceX has been at the forefront of space vehicle reusability with its Falcon 9 boosters, but now it is stepping up its game with the Falcon Heavy.

Falcon Heavy in essence straps together three Falcon 9 boosters (with a total of 27 engines) as a single, first-stage unit. The company revealed over the weekend that it has successfully completed a critical test in the development of Falcon Heavy, which it calls the “world’s most powerful rocket”.

SpaceX announced that the three, first-stage cores of Falcon Heavy have all completed test fires, and the company posted a stunning nighttime video as proof of its achievement. The test took place at SpaceX’s rocket development facility, which is located McGregor, Texas.

Falcon Heavy will produce an epic 5 million pounds of thrust at launch, and is capable of putting 54 metric tons (119,000 pounds) of cargo into orbit around the Earth. SpaceX says that Falcon Heavy’s payload capacity is only surpassed by the legendary Saturn V rocket, which helped put men on the moon.

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It is also claimed that Falcon Heavy will be able to offer a much more cost-effective alternative for putting payload into orbit compared to its next closest rival, the Delta IV Heavy. SpaceX claims that Falcon Heavy will be able to deliver twice the payload of Delta IV Heavy at one-third the cost. Those are some pretty big claims, but given SpaceX’s [complete] mastery of reusable Falcon 9 boosters, it’s within the realm of possibility.

SpaceX announced in late July that Falcon Heavy will makes its first test flight in November 2017. That’s just a few short months away, and this successful test proves that SpaceX is [hopefully] well on its way to reaching that goal.

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