I am living through the next great era of spaceflight.
Yesterday, SpaceX launched the most powerful rocket ever built. Not only did the rocket successfully take off and send it’s payload hurdling into space, but it also managed to land two of the three boosters back on earth. Seeing this happen live is easily one of the coolest things I’ve ever witnessed. It’s one of those things that help you realize that humans can do amazing things if we just push ourselves to do it. The engineers and scientists behind this launch have changed the world in some way, and shown people that we are so capable of greatness.
NASA has always been the shining beacon of space exploration in the US, and I think they’ll always have a special place, but seeing a private company take spaceflight to the next level is something to behold. I think of the Wright brothers, and how they were just two guys from Ohio that managed to fly a heavier than air machine because they believed they could do it. All the while, the US government couldn’t get their project off the ground. It’s the passion that makes the difference in some of these cases. The big thing that makes SpaceX so different from NASA is that they aren’t funded by the government and taxpayers. SpaceX can afford to take a risk and see it fail or succeed without having to stand before congress and justify their existence.
Elon Musk is a brilliant guy. He has a mission in his life to walk on (and die on) Mars. He’s doing whatever it takes and I definitely respect him for that. I hope he never stops trying ridiculous things that most people would never attempt. He’s definitely a crazy person, but he’s the kind of crazy person that we need.