A Brief History
On June 4, 2010, the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket booster made its first flight, and since then has been used as the launch booster for well over 200 launches, only one of which was a failure and one other a partial failure.
A reusable heavy lift orbital launch booster, the Falcon 9 is famous as the only privately made rocket to have carried humans into orbital flight, and is the only current US sourced rocket certified for manned flight.
In 2021, the amazing Falcon 9 set a space launch record by launching a mind boggling 143 satellites on a single launch mission! It proudly bears the NASA code of “Category 3,” which means it is certified for the most important NASA space missions.
SpaceX, more formally known as Space Exploration Technologies Corp, was founded in 2002 by Elon Musk, with a goal of lowering the cost of space travel and eventually sending humans to Mars.
Question for students (and subscribers): Should NASA continue to prepare for human flight to Mars? Please let us know in the comments section below this article.
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For more information, please see…
Berger, Eric. Liftoff: Elon Musk and the Desperate Early Days that Launched SpaceX. HarperAudio, 2021.
Seedhouse, Erik. SpaceX: Starship to Mars – The First 20 Years. Praxis, 2022.
You can also watch video versions of this article on YouTube.