On the heels of the announcement that the Falcon Heavy rocket will make its debut launch in November, SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to social media to share a first draft animation of how the much-anticipated rocket might look.
The animation depicts both the side boosters of the rocket landing back on Earth after sending off the core. After the first and second stages separate, the first stage rocket aligns itself for reentry. The side boosters are the same ones used in the company’s Falcon 9.
One point of discrepancy, the first draft animation shows the center booster landing on ground, but the booster will actually land on a droneship.
If we're lucky
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 28, 2017
Musk’s reference to “luck” in his tweet is in line with previous statements the EV mogul has made.
“There’s a lot of risk associated with Falcon Heavy, a real good chance that that vehicle does not make it to orbit. I want to make sure to set expectations accordingly. I hope it makes it far enough beyond the pad so that it does not cause pad damage. I would consider even that a win, to be honest,” Musk said, according to Spaceflight Now.
SpaceX has slated two Falcon Heavy tests for the first half of 2018, depending on how the November test goes.
Musk has confirmed that both side cores will land at LZ-1, SpaceX’s land-based landing facilities, and the center core will land on Of Course I Still Live You somewhere in the Atlantic. While not guaranteed, Musk’s myriad comments on the spectacular nature of the launch mean that SpaceX’s live coverage will offer some memorable views.
As our own Eric Ralph said, “If Falcon Heavy does indeed lift off above a more controlled fireball later this year, fans can look forward to what will be a stunning show of force.”
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