Falcon Heavy Set for January 2018
The massive SpaceX rocket comprising of three Falcon 9 boosters (with 9 engines each) is now expected to launch in 2018.
Elon Musk posted on social media that first payload will symbolically be his original Tesla Roadster, to be released into space (on trajectory towards Mars orbit), and will be playing the song Space Oddity by David Bowie as it lifts off. A copy of Isaac Asimov's Foundation Series sci-fi books according to yahoo.
The Falcon Heavy launch will look something like this animation produced by SpaceX in 2015:
The second stage in the above animation releases a satellite, however, this time Elon's Original Tesla Roadster appears to be positioned as the cargo for release - let's hope they are able to record this as it would be an epic release to watch. How cool would it be if the Roadster actually was fitted with a beacon that could be listened to while it's on it's journey??? Elon, if you read this in time, please add a beacon and maybe a solar panel to keep the thing going for a while!
There has been discussion that the car will be launched toward Mars, but Musk has also stated that he was fine with the idea of the car floating through space for billions of years.
The original timeline was for launch in 2017, although scheduling issues with SpaceX's busy launch manifest has pushed the great leap forward to January 2018. Let's hope all goes well. It is truly a great time to be alive and witness such history unfolding.