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10 Amazing Facts About Elon Musk's SpaceX

The aerospace company is known for being at the forefront of innovation.
SpaceX

Since SpaceX launched (yes, pun intended, we’re not sorry) 15 years ago, Elon Musk’s ambitious brainchild has grown into the most recognizable name in the aerospace industry.

Related: 20 Weird Things We've Learned About Elon Musk

Musk's goal is to use his company's innovative reusable rocket technology to not only ferry tourists into orbit, but create a sustainable colony on Mars -- and soon. He has said that his aim is to begin sending manned missions to the Red Planet by 2022. We’ll be watching.

Read on for 10 fun facts we have learned about the company.

10 Amazing Facts About Elon Musk's SpaceX

1. Short and sweet

SpaceX
SpaceX isn’t actually the company’s real name. The company's full name is Space Exploration Technologies Corporation.

10 Amazing Facts About Elon Musk's SpaceX

2. New partnerships

NASA

In 2012, SpaceX became the first private space company to dock with the International Space Station.

10 Amazing Facts About Elon Musk's SpaceX

3. Looking to the future

SpaceX

With that first connection with the ISS, SpaceX also did something unique -- the science experiments that it carried as cargo were developed by 15 students.

10 Amazing Facts About Elon Musk's SpaceX

4. Sense of history

SpaceX
In 2017, SpaceX became a part of a long tradition when its Falcon 9 rocket took off from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center, where the Apollo 11 moon mission began. It was also the first entity to use it since the complex was retired in 2011.

10 Amazing Facts About Elon Musk's SpaceX

5. Breaking down barriers

SpaceX

On March 30, 2017, SpaceX became the first entity to successfully launch and fly a reusable orbital class rocket.

10 Amazing Facts About Elon Musk's SpaceX

6. Not just about rockets

SpaceX isn’t only making big spacecrafts in its pursuit of creating a community on Mars. The company is also partnering with NASA to make specialized spacesuits.

10 Amazing Facts About Elon Musk's SpaceX

7. A heavy weight

SpaceX
The Dragon capsule can carry up to 13,228 pounds into space. The Falcon Heavy rocket, designed to withstand travel to Mars, can carry 119,000 pounds, which the SpaceX site describes as “a mass equivalent to a 737 jetliner loaded with passengers, crew, luggage and fuel.”

10 Amazing Facts About Elon Musk's SpaceX

8. A resume of firsts

SpaceX
The company has been the first to a lot of milestones, including the most important introductory stumbling block of being the first private company to successfully fund, build, launch, orbit a rocket and have that rocket safely land.

10 Amazing Facts About Elon Musk's SpaceX

9. Musk’s sense of irreverence is on full display

Lucasfilm
The Dragon spacecraft is named after the song “Puff the Magic Dragon.” The Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets are named after, you guessed it, the Millennium Falcon from Star Wars. If it’s good enough for Han Solo…

10 Amazing Facts About Elon Musk's SpaceX

10. It’s an astronaut taxi

Sony Pictures Entertainment

Starting in 2018, NASA astronauts will be taken into space by SpaceX rockets as part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program in lieu of relying on transportation from international space agencies such as Russia’s Roscosmos.