Elon Musk wasn’t always deeply involved with aerospace. Software engineering was his initial calling. Now, his company, SpaceX, is at the forefront of space travel. Oh, and he is revolutionizing electric cars at the same time with Tesla.
Two days ago, Elon Musk jumped on Reddit for a ‘Ask Me Anything’ chat with its users. Reddit might be best known for funny pictures of pets, but their AMAs are filled with great questions and answers.
Here’s some of the highlights.
On Friday’s rocket landing probability and how the 50% chance was factored
“I pretty much made that up. I have no idea :),” Musk wrote in reply. Ha! Nice. So either it works or it doesn’t. I guess that sums up about every space mission.
How the Falcon 9 first stage will secure itself to the floating platform?
Musk: “Mostly gravity. The center of gravity is pretty low for the booster, as all the engines and residual propellant is at the bottom.”
A Trip to Europa?
Musk: “There should definitely be a science mission to Europa.”
On SpaceX’s plans for a manned mission to Mars. Specifically, the transport system.
Musk: “The Mars transport system will be a completely new architecture. Am hoping to present that towards the end of this year. Good thing we didn’t do it sooner, as we have learned a huge amount from Falcon and Dragon.”
On SpaceX Spacesuits
Musk: “Our spacesuit design is finally coming together and will also be unveiled later this year. We are putting a lot of effort into design aesthetics, not just utility. It needs to both look like a 21st-century spacesuit and work well. Really difficult to achieve both.”
It’s not something you really think about, but it is time for a new spacesuit. I’m really interested to see what SpaceX will bring to the table. Hopefully, something a bit less bulky than the current ones.
On Skynet taking over
Musk: “The timeframe is not immediate, but we should be concerned. There needs to be a lot more work on A.I. safety. And, with all due respect to the Roomba dude, that is not a concern.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Of2HU3LGdbo”
There’s a lot more over on Reddit including how many hours of sleep Musk gets a night (6 hours) and SpaceX’s testing software (Kerbal Space Program!). He’s joking about KSP, but that shouldn’t stop you from playing it today.
Musk also talked about his favorite games. “I tend to like FPS with a story, like Bioshock, Fallout or Mass Effect, but was also a big fan of Civ and Warcraft.”
And his favorite alcoholic drink? “Whiskey.” Check out the full AMA for more.
SpaceX Launch Update
SpaceX is eyeing a launch attempt on Saturday, January 10th at 4:47 am EST. Set your alarm clock for 3:30 am EST to catch live coverage on NASA TV. If Saturday’s launch doesn’t happen, a backup date has been set for Tuesday, January 10th at 3:36 am EST.