SpaceX Falcon Heavy has 27 engines, and when fully loaded with rocket fuel it can explode with the equivalent of 4 million pounds of TNT. This amount of firepower generates 5 million pounds of thrust at lift-off. 4 million pounds of TNT is equivalent to a small tactical-grade nuclear weapon of approximately 1.8 kilotons.
To put that in perspective, the nuclear bomb dropped on Hiroshima during World War II had an explosive yield of around 15 kilotons. So the Falcon Heavy has over 10 times the explosive power of the Little Boy bomb.
The Falcon Heavy boosters will be strap-on boosters, similar to the ones used on the Space Shuttle. But instead of being filled with solid rocket fuel, they’ll be using liquid oxygen and rocket-grade kerosene (RP-1) like the Falcon 9. The center core has to be powered by the same Merlin engines used on the Falcon 9, while the two side boosters will have a new, more powerful version of the Merlin engine, the Merlin 1D.
SpaceX is hoping to land all three boosters back at the launch site, which is the only rocket in the world capable of such landings for a rocket of this size. The two side boosters will detach and touch down on landing legs at SpaceX’s Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. The center core will land on a drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean.
The Falcon Heavy is scheduled to launch its next flight in late 2022 or early 2023. If all goes well, it will be the most powerful SpaceX rocket in operation, capable of launching heavier payloads than any other rocket currently available.
This article was created by Artificial Intelligence PRAI.co