SpaceX quickly became popular because of their Falcon 9 rocket, which routinely blasts off from the launch pad to send equipment into space - be it a satellite or supplies for the International Space Station. Once it completes its primary mission, the rocket booster falls back to Earth and lands upright on a landing pad or a drone ship to get refurbished.
But now, SpaceX has a crazy new idea. At an international meeting on Friday, Elon Musk announced how he wants to create a new form of commercial transportation using the company's rocket technology that could ferry a person from one side of the planet to the other in under an hour.
Airplanes can take almost 15 hours to fly from New York City to Shanghai, but SpaceX claims that a rocket could perform the same transportation needs in less than 39 minutes. Many other trips could take less than 30 minutes.
It would involve the creation of a new type of spacecraft that could carry multiple people at once. It would launch high into Earth's atmosphere with the help of a rocket, where it will then travel up to 27,000 km/h toward its destination. Once there, the spacecraft would make a controlled landing with all its occupants, all while the original rocket booster lands upright on Earth to get refurbished.
Not only could this be a breakthrough new use for SpaceX's space rockets, but it could help the company raise funds to eventually send people to Mars, which is a goal that Musk aims to complete as soon as 2024.
It seems like it might be pretty expensive, but would you want to ride in a space rocket to get to another part of the world?