There’s no doubt that Elon Musk is an extremely influential and innovative individual. After revolutionizing the payment industry with PayPal, Musk turned his sights on electric cars by creating Tesla, and proceeded to put the private space industry on the map with the creation of SpaceX. With how much he has contributed to the world of technology and space travel, it’s more than excusable that Musk has a few quirks. Musk proceeded to launch one of his famous electric cars into space with the recent launch of the Falcon Heavy rocket, and a new website has sprung up that tracks the journey of the Tesla Roadster in space – piloted by the faithful mannequin, Starman.
When SpaceX launched their Falcon Heavy on February 6, all eyes were on the company with hopes that the launch would go off without a hitch. Despite how complicated space launches are, and considering the problems the company had had with their rockets in the past, the launch of the rocket went off splendidly – carrying a payload and bringing Musk’s dream of a Tesla Roadster in space to fruition.
Both Starman and the Tesla Roadster in space were equipped with cameras that live-streamed the journey of the duo as they moved further and further away from their home planet. Unfortunately, the transmission from the Tesla Roadster in space didn’t last nearly as long as expected. With an expected transmission length of around 12 hours as it hurtled deeper into space, we were disappointed to see that the stream died after around 4 hours, leaving viewers in the dark as to the journey of the Tesla Roadster in space accompanied by its dedicated pilot, Starman.
Fortunately, a new website has sprung up that should at least give us a sense of where exactly the Tesla Roadster in space is on its journey away from Earth. Titled “Where is Starman?”, the site updates in real time – allowing users to understand where exactly the Tesla Roadster in space is located in terms of distance, humorously adding how far beyond the Roadster is from its 36000-mile warranty. It’s safe to say that any insurance claim on the Tesla Roadster in space is probably moot at this point, with the car a good hundred million miles away.
Below is an example of the data you’ll see when you visit the site:
On February 6th, 2018, at 2045 UTC, the first Falcon Heavy was launched into space. It contained a very special payload- a Tesla Roadster with Starman.
“Tesla Roadster in Space
But where is this vehicle? The current location is 2,560,949 miles (4,121,450 km, 0.028 AU) from Earth, moving away from Earth at a speed of 7,562 miles/hour (12,170 km/hour, 3.38 km/s).
The car is 135,669,964 miles (218,339,709 km, 1.459 AU) from Mars, moving toward the planet at a speed of 43,226 miles/hour (69,566 km/hour, 19.32 km/s).
The car is 92,320,319 miles (148,575,197 km, 0.993 AU) from the Sun, moving away from the star at a speed of 2,723 miles/hour (4,383 km/hour, 1.22 km/s).
The car exceeded its 36,000 mile warranty 701.3 times while driving around the Sun, (25,247,970 miles, 40,632,682 km, 0.27 AU) moving at a speed of 71,372 miles/hour (114,862 km/hour, 31.91 km/s). It has achieved a fuel economy of 200.4 miles per gallon (85.2 km/liter, 1.17384 liters/100 km), assuming 126,000 gallons of fuel.
Assuming the battery still works, Starman has listened to Space Oddity 3,788 times since launch.”