Science

Elon Musk on SpaceX’s mega-rocket production delay: “In the end, we faced a real risk of bankruptcy”

Delays in the production of the Raptor engines that power the mega-rocket Starship, which will take Americans to the moon, could lead to the bankruptcy of the SpaceX company, its boss Elon Musk alarmed in a message to employees reported by US media on Tuesday.

“Unfortunately, the Raptor production crisis is much worse than it seemed a few weeks ago,” he wrote in an email published first by the specialized site Space Explored and then by the financial information channel CNBC.

“In the end, we face a real risk of bankruptcy if we do not succeed next year at the rate of at least one Starship theft every two weeks,” said the businessman, used to extreme claims, at the end of his sent message. Friday to employees, according to CNBC.

SpaceX did not immediately respond to AFP’s requests.

The spacecraft was chosen by NASA to become the lander used as part of its Artemis program back to the moon. The machine is also developed by SpaceX to transport cargo in space and ultimately to go to Mars.

Full Orbital Premier in 2022

The spacecraft has already made several suborbital flights and, after several tests completed in impressive explosions, it finally managed to land in May without destroying itself.

Elon Musk said in mid-November that Starship would attempt its first orbital flight early next year, once the required clearances have been obtained. “We hope to test a dozen launches next year,” he said during a speech to scientists at the National Academy of Sciences. “Maybe more.”

Known for his ability to work almost day and night in times of crisis, the head of the company, also head of Tesla, explains in his message that he has given up taking days off during Thanksgiving weekend and calls them . Similary.

“Unless you have family emergencies or cannot physically return to Hawthorne (company headquarters, editor’s note), we will need everyone’s help to recover from what, frankly, is a disaster,” he wrote there.

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