December 3, 2021
Space Exploration Technologies Corporation, better known as SpaceX, is an American aerospace technology company founded by Elon Musk in 2002 with money earned from the sale of its stake in PayPal. The company developed the Falcon 1, Falcon 9, Falcon Heavy and Dragon spacecraft, and began commercial launches of telecommunications satellites. Furthermore, the second generation of the Dragon, the Dragon 2, was developed, which will have both a cargo and a manned version and a super-heavy Starship missile system. According to Elon Musek, the company's goal is to significantly reduce the cost of space travel and thus allow humanity to colonize Mars. During its existence, SpaceX has achieved a number of successes. On September 28, 2008, it was the first private company in the world to reach the Earth's orbit using liquid-fuel engines, and as the first private company to launch a machine in orbit on December 9, 2010, and then land it in Pacific waters. On May 25, 2012, it was the first private company to successfully launch a spacecraft to the International Space Station, and on December 3, 2013, it made history when it was the first private company to reach a geosynchronous orbit as part of the launch of the SES-8 mission. On December 22, 2015, the company won another important first - it managed to land with the first stage of the Falcon 9 v1.2 rocket, and finally on March 31, 2017, the SES-10 mission re-used the first flying aircraft (from CRS-8). He was also the first private company to send a man to the ISS. Unlike government agencies and competitors, SpaceX uses a missile construction system, in which the entire construction process takes place within a single factory in California. SpaceX is thus not forced to transport individual parts of the rocket within the USA, which leads to a reduction in the cost of production of the rocket and thus lower the cost of launches. This approach, together with the high frequency of launches (SpaceX planned to make almost 40 missile launches from 2014 to 2018, eventually 59), allows the company to reduce costs. By mid-2014, SpaceX had managed to reduce the cost of one Falcon 9 launch into low Earth orbit to approximately $ 60 million. The competition is gradually responding to this reduction. For example, Arianespace, a world leader in space transportation, has been forced to reduce the cost of launching its rockets into geostationary orbit in response to SpaceX's declining costs. SpaceX is trying to design a reusable rocket in the long term. In January 2015, a test took place as part of Dragon's supply flight to the ISS, during which the company attempted to land the first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket on a platform located in the Atlantic Ocean. The test ended in partial success when the first stage was brought to the platform, however, during the final maneuver, the rocket crashed on the platform at a higher speed than planned. The company anticipates that if it successfully manages a soft missile landing after being used back, the launch price will be further reduced to $ 5-7 million. The ISS took place in September 2020. The first manned flight of Dragon 2 to the ISS took place in April 2021. In the autumn of 2021, the Inspiration4 mission should take place, which will be the first tourist flight into orbit around the Earth.