(RepublicanPress.org) – Founded in 2002 by controversial billionaire and chief Tesla architect Elon Musk, Space Exploration Technologies Corporation (SpaceX) had quite the year in 2020. The company appeared to leave the year with a bang, literally, on December 9 when a prototype rocket exploded after it hit the ground too fast while attempting to land.
The company completed 24 successful rocket launches in 2020, launching its first manned space mission in late May, the first of its kind for a privately-owned space exploration company.
SpaceX also conducted several successful missions in 2020, ferrying cargo to the International Space Station and delivering several satellites into orbit.
The company already has a big year planned for 2021.
SpaceX Plans for 2021
Plans for 2021 include sending a crew of astronauts into space aboard its Crew Dragon vessel in the spring. It’s also considering launching a second manned flight in the autumn. Additionally, SpaceX plans to launch a crew on its new Starliner vehicle under development with NASA officials.
On the whimsical side, the company enlisted a Ferrari designer’s services to help build remote-control operated cars to race on the moon. The cars are expected to be launched into space on a Falcon 9 rocket sometime in October 2021. Two teams of high school students will help with the cars’ final design and construction and race them on the moon’s surface.
Perhaps SpaceX’s most ambitious aim is to launch its first commercial mission using its Starship vehicle and its Super Heavy launching system. SpaceX vice president of commercial sales, Jon Hofeller, confirmed to Space News that the company was already in negotiations with three potential clients for the world’s first for-profit space mission.
SpaceX also plans two non-test manned missions to the International Space Station in 2021 and the first non-crewed orbital flight of its Starship Spacecraft.
2021 appears to be one for the history books, provided everything goes off without error. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, NASA and SpaceX completed several missions in 2020 and expect to be far busier in 2021.
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