Elon Musk has spent $100 million of his own money on Spacex.
Multiplanet Humanity essential to Survival
Musk truly believes – that low-cost space exploration is essential to the survival of mankind.
Elon Musk: I think it’s important that humanity become a multi-planet species. I think most people would agree that a future where we are a space-faring civilization is inspiring and exciting compared with one where we are forever confined to Earth until some eventual extinction event. That’s really why I started SpaceX.
SpaceX builds most of its rockets and spacecraft “in-house” – based on Musk’s belief that it’s more efficient and lowers costs. Fourteen-hundred engineers and skilled technicians work here –building engines, rockets, space capsules – creating, mostly from scratch, the thousands of components that are the guts of a rocket.
Elon Musk: So what that means is raw metal comes in and then we build the engines, the frame, the electronics and we integrate all of that together and that’s all done more or less under one roof.
Engineers – Spacex like going back in time to work with Howard Hughes – dawn of new era
Former NASA astronaut Garrett Reisman spent three months aboard the space station and flew on one of the final shuttle missions. He was brought in to help oversee the company’s manned space work.
Scott Pelley: You know, I’m curious. You have so much background in engineering, such a long and enviable career at NASA. You could have easily gotten a job at Boeing or at Lockheed, but you came here and I wonder why.
Garrett Reisman: If you had a chance to go back in time and work with Howard Hughes when he was creating TWA, if you had a chance to be there at that moment when it was the dawn of a brand new era, would– wouldn’t you want to do that? I mean, that’s why I’m here.
And that’s why most of the engineers we met are here. Building spaceships is the chance of a lifetime.