Elon Musk promises 'anywhere in the world in one hour'

By | septiembre 29, 2017
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SpaceX founder and billionaire Elon Musk has revealed that people could be transported around the word on most long-distance trips in under one hour using a new spacecraft he’s designed and codenamed “BFR”, understood to stand for “Big F—ing Rocket”.

Musk’s plan was unveiled in a highly-anticipated public presentation he gave in Adelaide on Friday afternoon at the International Astronautical Congress, in which he updated the world’s space industry on his plans to build a colony on Mars and a lunar base on the Moon.

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SpaceX blasted off a rocket for the first time since a launch pad explosion in the fall sidetracked the ambitious flight plans of company founder Elon Musk.

The congress, the 68th time it has been held and the second time in Australia, is a meeting of the minds for the world’s space industry.

Earlier in the day defence contractor Lockheed Martin presented its plans to rival SpaceX on Friday morning flagging the prospect of a Mars base, beating Musk to the punch.

Despite cancelling the press conference Musk was due to hold after the presentation, he went ahead with the public presentation which thousands of people attended. A huge line was seen outside the Adelaide Convention Centre, where the congress was being held.

Security was tight and parts of the conference centre were locked down before Musk’s presentation.

One member of the public complained to the registration desk that it would cost more than $1000 to see Musk, which, he said, “seemed a little unfair”.

But the truth of the matter was that this was the registration cost to attend the week-long conference.

While the main focus of Musk’s presentation was the BFR’s ability to be used as a spacecraft to transport humans to Mars and the Moon by 2022 (cargo) and 2024 (cargo and crew), he surprised the audience when he said it could also be used to transport people Earth-to-Earth, with most long-distance trips occurring in under 30 minutes. While Sydney to London would take 51 minutes, other routes would take 30 minutes or less, he said.

“There is something else,” Musk said, before showing a video of Earth-to-Earth BFR travel.

It felt like the 46-year-old billionaire’s late Steve Jobs “one more thing” moment.

“If you build a ship that is capable of going to Mars, what if you take that spaceship and flew it from one place on Earth to another? So, we did that.”

What if you take that spaceship and flew it from one place on Earth to another? So, we did that

Elon Musk

Musk said most of what the BFR would be used for is long-distance trips and would do them “in less than half an hour.”

The BFR could fly people from Los Angeles to Toronto in 24 mins; Los Angeles to New York in 25 mins; Los Angeles to Honolulu in 25 mins; and Bangkok to Dubai in 27 mins.

Musk said it could also be used to dock with the International Space Station, in addition to being used to get cargo and people to Mars and the Moon.

“It’s a little bit big but it will work,” Musk said of it next to the ISS.

“We travel 27,000kmh or roughly 18,000 mph.This is where the propulsive landing becomes very important.The great thing about going to space is there is no friction,” Musk said.

“So once you are out of the atmosphere there’s no atmosphere. And you can get to most long-distance places like I said in less than half an hour. And if we are building this thing [the BFR] to go to the Moon and Mars then why not go to other places on Earth as well?”

A crowd member shouted, “We love you Elon”.

Musk replied, “thank you” before walking off the stage without taking questions.

In other news, SpaceX said the BFR was also capable of transporting satellites to orbit, crew and cargo to the International Space Station, and completing missions to the Moon and Mars. SpaceX also announced that its Falcon 9 rocket had completed 16 successful landings.

When people looked shocked at Musk’s ambitious timeline to get to Mars, he replied, “That’s not a typo. But it is aspiration.”

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