Elon Musk has been on one hell of a roll lately. Within the last two months, two of Musk’s companies have transformed their respective fields. Musk’s space transport company, SpaceX landed a Falcon 9 rocket booster vertically on a barge floating in the Atlantic ocean. Another one of his companies, Tesla took deposits for an astonishing 325,000 Tesla Model 3 electric cars. Musk could pretty much chill for the rest of his life and be more accomplished than 99.99% of people, but he just isn’t that kind of guy.
The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lands on a barge in the Atlantic Ocean.
Instead of chilling, Musk did two things most people would consider impossible. First, he announced that Tesla would aim to produce half a million cars per year two years ahead of schedule in 2018 instead of 2020. Then he landed a second Falcon 9 rocket booster on a barge at a much higher speed than had been achieved in the first booster landing last month.
The Tesla factory in Fremont, California
Many analysts believe Musk’s production goals for Tesla are impossible, and they may be, but if anyone can pull off a seemingly impossible task it’s Elon Musk. When it comes to SpaceX’s ability to recover boosters, pretty much everyone sees the benefit and agrees that it’s a game changer. Building rockets is, no shit, an incredibly expensive endeavor. How expensive? Well a Falcon 9 rocket costs $60 Million to build from scratch. Luckily refueling and refurbishing a “used” Falcon 9 only costs $200,000. That means reusing Falcon 9’s is 300 times cheaper than building new rocket each time. Being able to launch 300 reused rockets for the price of one new rocket is an monumental game changer.
Cheaper space flight is the key to ushering in a new era of space exploration. Building half a million Tesla 3’s a year is key to making electric vehicles mainstream. Elon Musk did both in two months.
Oh, and did we mention that Musk wants to fund a private mission to Mars that may be ready for lift off as soon as 2018? We’d say it’s impossible, but then again this guy keeps proving us wrong.
Elon Musk Interviewed at TED
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