Environment & Science

WATCH: SpaceX successfully launches Falcon Heavy, most powerful rocket in decades

The Falcon Heavy rocket successfully launched Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018.
The Falcon Heavy rocket successfully launched Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018.
SpaceX (via YouTube)

The world's newest, most powerful rocket in decades has reached space. It took a few weather delays Tuesday, but the private space company SpaceX has successfully launched its Falcon Heavy rocket from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Watch the video of the launch at the top of this page. (If you'd like to skip ahead to the very moment the rocket lifts off, you can find it about 29:50 into the video.)

SpaceX is in the business of making getting into orbit a lot cheaper, and Falcon Heavy is yet the latest example. According to the company, it will cost just $90 million per launch, a fraction of the price of similar heavy-lift rockets.

Elon Musk, SpaceX's founder, has said the ultimate goal is to make humans an interplanetary species, by creating a colony on Mars.

Falcon Heavy is a small step on that journey but it is still a very large machine. Weighing in at over 1,500 tons, it can carry more stuff into space than any vehicle since the Saturn V rockets of the Apollo Era.

On board this flight is a car made by one of Musk's other companies, Tesla. The cherry red roadster will be launched into an elliptical Earth-Mars orbit. At a press conference Monday, Musk said three cameras mounted to the car should provide "epic views."

Tesla video

NPR's Nell Greenfieldboyce has more on the launch here.

This story has been updated.

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