Now that the rocket has successfully completed its tests, the first launch is within sight.
SpaceX's Falcon Heavy stands tall at Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida during ground testing. A second stage with a single engine sites atop the center core.
The Falcon Heavy can carry the biggest payload since the Apollo lunar programme's Saturn V - and is viewed as an essential step in Musk's plan to establish a human colony on Mars.
This first simulation signifies that after many years, the Falcon Heavy is ready for takeoff. More impressive that the output of the platform however, is that Musk claims each Falcon Heavy launch will cost less than a third of the price of a Delta IV launch, which is now the most powerful operational platform in use today.
The unprecedented commercial launch vehicle is now scheduled to loft its Tesla Roadster payload on an Earth-escape trajectory as early as February 6, with a backup window the following day, as noted by Chris.
Footage of the test fire shows the eruption of a massive cloud of exhaust and steam swallowing NASA's historic Launch Pad 39A while the Heavy's engines give off a deafening roar. At the time, Musk predicted in a follow-up tweet the a proper launch would happen soon. However, Musk has said that the rocket could fail on its debut test flight.
Its first stage is composed of three Falcon 9 nine-engine cores whose 27 Merlin engines together generate more than 5 million pounds (2.3 million kg) of thrust at liftoff, equal to about eighteen 747 aircraft.
The Falcon Heavy is tailor-made for launching large satellites to geosynchronous orbits, or for sending payloads to the moon or Mars.