Ahead of Tuesday’s planned launch of the Falcon Heavy, SpaceX has released a simulation video of the mission.
The payload for the mission, Elon Musk’s Tesla Roadster, is shown floating through space with a space-suited mannequin at the wheel. It seems SpaceX actually place a mannequin in the seat. Musk shared pictures of “Starman” on Instagram.
Falcon Heavy is set to launch Tuesday at 1:30pm EST at Launch Complex (Pad) 39A in Cape Canaveral, Florida.
Below is SpaceX’s description of the mission and the animation.
When Falcon Heavy lifts off, it will be the most powerful operational rocket in the world by a factor of two. With the ability to lift into orbit nearly 64 metric tons (141,000 lb)—a mass greater than a 737 jetliner loaded with passengers, crew, luggage and fuel–Falcon Heavy can lift more than twice the payload of the next closest operational vehicle, the Delta IV Heavy, at one-third the cost.
Falcon Heavy’s first stage is composed of three Falcon 9 nine-engine cores whose 27 Merlin engines together generate more than 5 million pounds of thrust at liftoff, equal to approximately eighteen 747 aircraft.
Following liftoff, the two side boosters separate from the center core and return to landing sites for future reuse. The center core, traveling further and faster than the side boosters, also returns for reuse, but lands on a drone ship located in the Atlantic Ocean.
At max velocity the Roadster will travel 11 km/s (7mi/s) and travel 400 million km (250 million mi) from Earth.