Whatever you think of Elon Musk, you can’t argue that the man has small dreams. Practical electric cars people actually want, reusable rockets, solar roof tiles, giant lithium batteries for your house, hyperloops subways and giant boring machines. These are just a few of the things that Musk’s companies Tesla and SpaceX have brought us. Most people would be happy with this not-so-modest list of achievements, but Elon wants to go to Mars and everything he’s developing seems to relate to that dream.
Last week must finally announced the mystery rich guy who would get to be a passenger on the SpaceX BFR. His name is Yusaku Maezawa and he plans to bring up to eight people with him to leave Earth, fly around the moon and then (hopefully) come back in one piece.
Big &#%&!!@ Rocket
The BFR itself still doesn’t have a final design, but what we do know about this monster is incredible. The first BFR prototype is being built in a giant industrial tent, while a permanent factory to make its successors is being constructed.
The rocketship will be reusable like all SpaceX rockets, but this trip to the moon is actually just a test drive. This is the ship Musk wants us to use to reach Mars. Maybe one day regular people like us will get to board one of these babies, but probably not in our lifetimes.
The good news is that SpaceX is going to offer us the next best thing in 2023 when this mission is set to launch. A VR live stream, so that millions of people can experience (more or less) what only a tiny handful of humans ever have.
To the Moon (In VR)
The last time that any humans were near the moon was in 1972 with the Apollo 17 mission. There have been a few unmanned flybys conducted by various nations, but people? It’s been half a century.
According to Elon himself, there will be an HD live stream from the BFR, which will of course be a few seconds behind real time, given the distance that the signal has to travel.
While the BFR mission will already break a million technical milestones, streaming HD VR video from the moon is still an incredible technical feat. Musk said on his Twitter account that their Starlink satellites would be up and running in time to treat us all to the ride of a lifetime.
Now all they have to do is build the rocket and get it into space. Easy, right?