4 Things That SpaceX Can Do In 2017 To Regain Momentum For Mars PlansBy Emily Marks
SpaceX is expected to accomplish a lot of things next year. There are a few things that Elon Musk's company needs to do, though, in order to regain its momentum for its Mars plans.
According to Ars Technica, there are four things that SpaceX needs to do in order to get back up on the race to Mars. This includes moving forward with its launch schedules.
Relaunch in early January
It was previously reported that SpaceX has announced that launching is expected to begin in early January. If this pushes through, it would happen just four months after the Falcon 9 rocket exploded on a Florida launch pad last September 1.
However, Elon Musk's company still does not have a license from the Federal Aviation Association (FAA). The company confirmed that they are "finalizing the investigation" on the Falcon 9 rocket blast. They are also working on the final steps needed for a safe and reliable return to flight of the spacecraft.
Re-fly old booster
The company revealed that it plans to re-fly one of its already-flown boosters in early 2017. A swift refurbishing and relaunching of rockets is important for reusable rockets.
A SpaceX spokesperson has confirmed with the publication that the Falcon Heavy will be launched by early or middle of 2017. The rocket consists of three Falcon 9 cores and is believed to be the most powerful booster on Earth. It has a capacity of 54 metric tons to low-Earth orbit. Plus, it is said to only cost about $90 million.
Commercial crew flight
SpaceX has officially delayed the first crewed flight of its Dragon capsule. The vehicle is intended to be used to take NASA astronauts to and from the International Space Station (ISS).
Apparently, the company is conducting a careful assessment of its designs, systems and processes to make sure that the crewed flight with NASA is safe. It has partnered with the space agency to have a detailed safety analysis of all potential hazards.