Mars-bound rocket SpaceX Los Angeles

SpaceX to build new Mars-bound rocket in Los Angeles

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The Big Falcon Rocket will take its first volunteers to the red planet by 2022

Elon Musk and his SpaceX team are taking yet another step closer to sending people to Mars, as the city of Los Angeles is about to lease them a parcel of land for the construction of the new Big Falcon Rocket, which is also known by a less child-friendly name.

The facility, which could employ up to 700 people, will be built in Port of Los Angeles and the company will pay an annual rent of approximately $1.38 million.

“Officially announcing that @SpaceX will start production development of the Big Falcon Rocket in the @PortofLA! This vehicle holds the promise of taking humanity deeper into the cosmos than ever before,” Los Angeles mayor, Eric Garcetti, said in a tweet.

While the SpaceX headquarters is based in the Los Angeles suburb of Hawthorne, the location will save the company time and money. The firm has already been using the Port of Los Angeles for missions to recover the Falcon 9 first-stage boosters on a floating platform in the Pacific.

The BFR’s is intended to be multipurpose. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has said he aims to use the new rocket for missions into Earth orbit, to the moon and to Mars. The launch of the first red planet mission is planned for 2022, Musk said.

The rocket is also supposed to serve as a high-speed connection between cities on Earth, such as carrying travellers between New York and Shanghai in 39 minutes.

“SpaceX has called the Port of Los Angeles home to our west coast recovery operations since 2012 and we truly appreciate the City of Los Angeles‘ continued partnership,” Gwynne Shotwell, SpaceX president and chief operating officer, said in a statement.

“As announced today by mayor Garcetti, the Port will play an increasingly important role in our mission to help make humanity multi-planetary as SpaceX begins production development of BFR – our next generation rocket and spaceship system capable of carrying crew and cargo to the moon, Mars and beyond,” she said.

“The rockets, once complete, would be too large for reasonable transport by road and thus must be transported by barge or ship, necessitating that the facility be water adjacent.”

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