SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has announced that Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa, founder of Japan’s largest online clothing retailer site Zozotown, will the company’s first private customer to be sent to the moon.
Musk said that he will be flying on the company’s future massive rocket, dubbed the ‘Big Falcon Rocket’ (BFR), which is scheduled to be launched somewhere around 2023.
Envisioning the entire experience on the lines of an art project – #dearMoon – SpaceX has also created a website that went live right after the announcement.
This isn’t the first time SpaceX has ventured into a project such as this. In February last year, the company had announced that it will be putting people on the Moon via its Falcon Heavy Rocket – slated to launch end of this year. However, the project got scrapped later on. At the Falcon Heavy Rocket’s inaugural launch in February, Musk said that SpaceX had decided to put people on the BFR instead.
The BFR is another massive upcoming reusable rocket in SpaceX’s portfolio which will be used to send people to the Moon and Mars.
Musk has said that upon completion, it will be able to take up to 100 tons of payload all the way to Mars. However, this will be possible only after the rocket gets refueled in orbit by some kind of tanker spacecraft.
Once the rocket is built, it is expected to reach a height of nearly 348 feet and will be powered by 31 main Raptor engines, a new SpaceX design that can provide a combined 5,400 tons of thrust and will be able to hold at least 100 passengers at a time.
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