[WATCH] SpaceX Will Reveal Their Plan to Send a Private Passenger Around the Moon Today
SpaceX has signed the world's first private passenger to fly around the Moon aboard our BFR launch vehicle-an important step toward enabling access for everyday people who dream of traveling to space. Find out who's flying and why on Monday, September 17. pic.twitter.com/64z4rygYhk- SpaceX (@SpaceX) September 14, 2018
The official announcement will be streamed live today at 9:00 PM ET (6:00 PM PT) via YouTube, and may include some updates on the BFR (which stands for Big Falcon Rocket, or Big F**ing Rocket if you're Elon Musk.) The BFR is planned as the vehicle making the actual trip around the Moon, but right now, the spacecraft is shrouded in mystery: commentators have been hungrily watching a white tent in Port Angeles that contains SpaceX's BFR prototype, but the company has refused to release detailed info about it. Some of the basic specs of the BFR have been revealed, however: it's planned to be a "157-foot-tall spaceship sitting atop a 191-foot-tall rocket booster," built primarily from carbon fiber, weighing around 9 million pounds, with the ability to carry about 150 tons of cargo and 100 passengers. It's also supposed to be 100% re-usable.
It's unclear what happened to the previous announcement that SpaceX had two private passengers signed up to fly around the Moon this year in a Crew Dragon capsule (supported by Falcon Heavy rockets). Apparently, both had already put down deposits on the flight, which would have lasted a week.
Either way, SpaceX's ultimate goal remains to make it to Mars: the current plan is to send cargo missions out to Mars in 2022, then follow up with human astronauts in 2024. The BFR will be critical to these missions, so learning more about its progress today could shed light on whether SpaceX will make good on its promises to turn regular people into Martians. You can watch the stream below at 9:00 PM ET!