When and how did SpaceX get started?
Yes, SpaceX, or Space Exploration Technologies Corp., was founded in 2002 by Elon Musk. The company was established with the ambitious goal of reducing space transportation costs to enable the colonization of Mars. Here is a brief timeline of SpaceX's inception and its early milestones: - **2002** – Elon Musk founds Space Exploration Technologies Corp., or SpaceX, after selling his previous company, PayPal, to eBay. - **2006** – SpaceX attempted its first launch of the Falcon 1 rocket, which unfortunately failed only minutes after liftoff. - **2008** – After three failed attempts, the fourth launch of Falcon 1 becomes the first privately funded, liquid-propellant rocket to reach orbit. - **2008** – SpaceX secures a contract from NASA for the Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) program to demonstrate cargo delivery to the International Space Station (ISS) with a potential for crew transport in the future. These early years were critical for SpaceX as they proved that a private company could not only develop its own orbital rockets but also secure contracts from prestigious entities like NASA. In the following years, SpaceX would go on to develop the Falcon 9 rocket, the Dragon spacecraft, achieve the first propulsive landing of an orbital rocket booster, and significantly disrupt the space industry with their lower launch costs and rapid innovation. The founding of SpaceX marked the beginning of a new era in space exploration, one that opened up the industry to private enterprise and has since led to numerous technological advancements and milestones in space travel.