After at least seven years and many anxiety-inducing hours on Tuesday, the Falcon Heavy is finally about to fly, Elon Musk has confirmed — weather permitting.
“Launch auto-sequence initiated (aka the holy mouse-click) for 3:45 liftoff #FalconHeavy,” the SpaceX founder writes on Twitter. Unsurprisingly, the tweet has already garnered over 12,000 likes in about 15 minutes.
The Falcon Heavy’s launch window was set to open at 1:30 pm Eastern and extend until 4 pm. Wind conditions at Cape Canaveral caused SpaceX to delay the launch several times on Tuesday as some reporters and onlookers expected they’d have to come back Wednesday. But as the old platitude (almost) goes, with rockets, you have to expect the unexpected — at least when they’re SpaceX rockets.
Though it’s been far from a smooth ride so far, we have to give credit where it’s due: this gigantic rocket is ready to spread its wings, like a large, terrifying space bird — and we’re so damn excited to watch.
Apparently Elon’s pretty pumped, too. He’s tweeting happy things!
SpaceX will attempt to land several of the Falcon Heavy’s boosters back on Earth, although the rocket’s payload is infamously going to cruise toward Mars to achieve a heliocentric orbit called a Trans-Mars injection. This means that Elon Musk’s midnight cherry Roadster will zoom around in an orbit around the sun that will bring it close to Earth and Mars multiple times, possibly for thousands of years.
But before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s just watch SpaceX’s big launch. The weather has to remain favorable for less then two hours in order for the rocket to take off.
As always, ad astra, SpaceX! We’ll be cheering you on from the sidelines — nervously, but in a good way.