Elon Musk, the visionary futurist who went into the greatest of details regarding his plans on making humans, an ‘interplanetary species’, gave some intriguing details on the currently used Merlin engines, along with the fresh out of the steam, Raptor engines.
The most interesting of them all, was a staggering piece of stat — SpaceX is producing a whopping 300 Merlin engines a year. For those, who aren’t unaware of what these engines are, Merlin is a family of rocket engines developed by SpaceX for use on its Falcon 1 and Falcon 9 launch vehicles. SpaceX is also planning to employ the same set of engines for its Falcon Heavy rocket as well.
We know how to build rocket engines in volumes,
said a rather humble Elon Musk.
SpaceX sure as hell does.
The reason behind musk’s mentioning of this number was the fact, that since the just successfully tested Raptor engines are almost the same size as Merlins and have a similar production timeline, SpaceX could build a similar number of Raptors in near future. Raptors BTW, are the ones that will fire up our rockets to Mars.
To give you a perspective, a rocket launcher uses 42 engines at the bottom and 9 at the top, thus totalling a 51 engines. Now this gives SpaceX a staggering capacity to launch 5 rockets every year. And of course, if you take up the remaining 49 engines and keep adding them up to the next year’s production, the company could well reach a capacity of launching close to 10 rockets a year in a very short span of time. That of course isn’t happening right now, because a lot launches for SpaceX have failed. Nevertheless, this is some really massive number, that too when you look into as production of not some expensive luxury car, but rocket engines that our expected to carry the light of humanity to Mars, or ultimately outer space.
Stay tuned with us as we bring in more updates about Elon Musk’s plans in subsequent posts.