At the International Astronautical Congress in Australia, Elon Musk, SpaceX’s CEO, announced his plan to safely transport humans to the moon by 2022 and to Mars by 2024. He also plans to fly humans across the globe from one point to another in less than an hour’s time. For this mission, a rocket by the code name of BFR—Big Falcon Rocket— will be used and reused. In comparison to the last year’s version, this spacecraft is half the mass and 52 feet shorter; it has the potential to carry 150 tons of cargo into orbit making it one of the most powerful rockets to be built. It has the capacity to accommodate around 100 passengers across 40 compartments and other spaces.
According to Musk, BFR is built on the premise that it will fruitfully cannibalise SpaceX’s current rockets and space crafts. In doing so, the current rocket systems will become redundant and the company will be able to concentrate all its resources to a single space vehicle. However, this is considered to be less practical, as a single rocket vehicle designed to perform various tasks and missions may not be pointedly adept at any of them. Apart from that, BFR is hugely based on speculation, over-ambition and hypothetical technologies, which give the whole system a theoretical approach. BFR is based on various theories that include a methane-run engine called Raptor, an enormous tank for propellants, and a system to refuel in space.
With the current US space policy that is focused on stopping on the lunar surface and exploring it, NASA intends to use spacecrafts developed by private aerospace manufacturers, and hence SpaceX is expected to flourish. To stay in the competition, other rocket manufacturing companies such as Blue Origin, Astrobotic, etc. have planned lunar missions too.
SpaceX enjoys major success in the space launch market competition. It has incorporated state-of-the-art technologies and mechanisms in developing their rockets. It has flown various missions for NASA and the US Air Force, while outpacing its rivals. SpaceX has successfully completed 13 space missions in 2017, and it has hit $20 billion as its net worth. SpaceX has faced a few limitations of its own; it has had to abort a program called the Red Dragon, which intended to customize the Dragon rocket, as it had to prioritise other missions of the company. Apart from that, it planned to finance its plan to reach Mars by the operation of an Internet-broadcasting satellite constellation, but this, to the disappointment of Musk, faced regulations.