What Happened: Musk was responding to a Twitter post that shared a Bryce Space Tech report listing the global orbital launches by different operators in the third quarter.
The report ranks SpaceX second in the total payload mass of orbital rocket launches in the third quarter, just below China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation.
What’s perhaps most crazy is a single Starship / SuperHeavy launch could put everything launched in that quarter into orbit in a single launch… now that’s impressive.
— Everyday Astronaut (@Erdayastronaut) November 8, 2021
The report says CASC deployed about 45,010 kilograms payload in the third quarter, while SpaceX deployed 32,634 kgs with the Falcon 9 rocket fleet.
“Actually, 41 tons for SpaceX in Q3 & aiming for 80 tons in Q4. That said, China’s launch mass to orbit is extremely impressive,” Musk tweeted.
He later said the Starship fleet is capable of delivering “1,000 times more payload” than all rockets combined and that “almost no one understands this.”
The Starship fleet is designed to achieve over 1000 times more payload to orbit than all other rockets on Earth combined.
Almost no one understands this.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 8, 2021
Why It Matters
Musk had in July said SpaceX is developing a fully-reusable Starship that can deliver a payload of around 150 tonnes to low Earth Orbit and about 250 tonnes when expendable.
The fully reusable Starship launch system would eventually replace the Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets. SpaceX aims to build a fleet of 1,000 reusable Starships over the next two decades.
Musk dreams of colonizing Mars and founded SpaceX with the mission to make humanity multiplanetary. He has in the past said he remains “highly confident” that SpaceX would land humans on Mars by 2026.
By Rachit Vats
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