The third manned flight of NASA and SpaceX: 5 questions about Elon Musk


1. How did Elon Musk reach this milestone?

His journey begins at the age of twelve when he creates a video game – quite simply – in which the player is called upon to wage war against aliens. Blastar sold for $ 500.

Born in South Africa, Elon Musk left the country in 1988 at the age of 17 Only $ 2000 (A new window) In his pocket, then he arrived in Montreal and studied in Ontario and the United States. In the 1990s, he co-founded two tech companies, Zip2 and X.com (which would become PayPal) and earned several hundreds of millions upon selling them.

In 2002, based on his earnings, he launched SpaceX. After three unsuccessful missile launches, 2008 became the year of last chance. The fourth launch was successful with the first missile reaching orbit. Then NASA signs a contract to refuel the International Space Station.

The first NASA mission took place in 2012. Then SpaceX put satellites from other organizations into orbit. With th Starlink Project Announced by the company in 2015, it is trying to create a network of thousands of satellites around the Earth to provide high-speed internet access to rural areas.

Since 2010, Falcon 9 rockets have been launched more than a hundred times, and the vast majority have returned safely to Earth.

2. What is SpaceX’s business model?

Friday’s space mission, called Crew-2, embodies the SpaceX business model. The Dragon capsule carrying astronauts was used in May during The first manned flight Falcon 9, in November during The second trip.

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For the company, hardware reuse is the key to the future of space exploration to reduce costs and increase departures.

Elon Musk often dreams about the extent of life Multi-planetary The low-cost structure for space operations will transport a million people to Mars by 2050. He is paranoid in his spare time, and hopes to make humans set foot on the red planet for the first time from here in 2026. But SpaceX above all must be landed on the moon. By 2024. And NASA actually awarded him US $ 2.9 billion contract Last week to do so.

A prototype of SpaceX’s Starship, photographed in Boca Chica, Texas, in September 2019.

Photo: Getty Images / Loren Elliott

SpaceX is a private company. the magazine Forbes It was reported in February that the company would be valued at $ 74 billion after a $ 850 million financing round. The purpose of the fundraising was Project Starlink as well as Project Starship, a shuttle that will replace Falcon 9 missiles and Dragon ships. Elon Musk is said to own 48% of the shares of SpaceX.

3. What stake does Elon Musk have in Tesla?

In 2004, according to Wired, Elon Musk invests $ 6.3 million in Tesla Motors, a startup that he will become president and CEO of. Despite the ups and downs, the adventure was fruitful to say the least. Its electric cars now have an enviable notoriety in the automotive sector, but major manufacturers are taking increasing prominence in their stature.

Tesla’s market cap passed $ 800 billion earlier this year. With a 22% stake in the company, he was the director The richest man on the planet In a moment. In the past few days, the total value of outstanding shares has reached nearly 700 billion.

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Sustainable energy will happen regardless, as he noted in a TED interview in 2017. If Tesla didn’t exist, it would have been created out of necessity. It is a filler. If you don’t have sustainable energy, that means you have unsustainable energy and the resources will eventually run out.

A year earlier, Tesla acquired SolarCity, the manufacturer of solar panels, for $ 2.6 billion.

4. What other companies does he own?

Elon Musk also runs the Boring Company dedicated to building state-of-the-art tunnels to reduce traffic density.

A Tesla car enters the Boring Tunnel.

Elon Musk says he got the idea of ​​digging road tunnels while he was stuck in traffic.

Photo: AFP / Getty Images / ROBYN BECK

The businessman is also relying on other projects such as Hyperloop, an invention of moving people in tubes at very high speed, OpenAI, a non-profit organization dedicated to artificial intelligence, and Neuralink, a company trying to connect the human brain to his smartphone using a chip.

5. How much is his wealth?

According to Forbes, at the age of forty-nine, on Thursday, Elon Musk remained the third richest man on the planet, behind Jeff Bezos and Bernard Arnault. His fortune is $ 176 billion.

However, his fortune still relied heavily on fluctuations in Tesla stock market shares. In February, the title’s decline caused 15 billion of her properties to drop in one day. Contributors badly received his comments on Twitter that the bitcoin price appears to be high. His tweet came two weeks after the automaker announced a $ 1.5 billion investment in the cryptocurrency.

The billionaire is also a follower of cryptocurrencies that have skyrocketed in the past year. It’s hard to know how much money he invested in it, but it wouldn’t be surprising if it represented a few billion dollars in his portfolio.

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