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Falcon Heavy
Arabsat-6A Mission (40628442293).jpg
SpaceX's Falcon Heavy rocket lifts off from Kennedy Space Center LC-39A with the Arabsat-6A satellite (April 2019).
Function Orbital heavy-lift launch vehicle
Manufacturer SpaceX
Country of origin United States
Cost per launch
  • Reusable: $90M
  • Expendable: $150M
Size
Height 70 m (230 ft)
Diameter 3.66 m (12.0 ft)
Width 12.2 m (40 ft)
Mass 1,420,788 kg (3,132,301 lb)
Stages 2+
Capacity
Payload to LEO (28.5°) 63,800 kg (140,700 lb)
Payload to GTO (27°) 26,700 kg (58,900 lb)
Payload to Mars 16,800 kg (37,000 lb)
Payload to Pluto 3,500 kg (7,700 lb)
Associated rockets
Family Falcon 9
Comparable
  • Delta IV Heavy
  • Long March 5
  • New Glenn
  • Saturn C-3
  • Vulcan
Launch history
Status Active
Launch sites
Total launches 3
Successes 3
Landings 7 cores landed / 9 attempted
First flight February 6, 2018
Boosters
No. boosters 2
Engines 9 Merlin 1D per booster
Thrust Sea level: 7.6 MN (1,700,000 lbf) (each)
Vacuum: 8.2 MN (1,800,000 lbf) (each)
Total thrust Sea level: 15.2 MN (3,400,000 lbf)
Vacuum: 16.4 MN (3,700,000 lbf)
Specific impulse Sea level: 282 seconds
Vacuum: 311 seconds
Burn time 154 seconds
Fuel Subcooled LOX / Chilled RP-1
First stage
Engines 9 Merlin 1D
Thrust Sea level: 7.6 MN (1,700,000 lbf)
Vacuum: 8.2 MN (1,800,000 lbf)
Specific impulse Sea level: 282 seconds
Vacuum: 311 seconds
Burn time 187 seconds
Fuel Subcooled LOX / Chilled RP-1
Second stage
Engines 1 Merlin 1D Vacuum
Thrust 934 kN (210,000 lbf)
Specific impulse 348 seconds
Burn time 397 seconds
Fuel LOX / RP-1

Falcon Heavy is a reusable heavy-lift launch vehicle designed and made by SpaceX. It is inspired from the Falcon 9 vehicle. This increases the low Earth orbit (LEO) maximum payload to 63,800 kilograms (140,700 pounds), compared to 22,800 kilograms (50,300 pounds) for a Falcon 9 Full Thrust, 28,790 kilograms (63,470 pounds) for Delta IV Heavy, 27,500 kilograms (60,600 pounds) for the Space Shuttle and 140,000 kilograms (310,000 pounds) for Saturn V. Falcon Heavy is the world's fourth-highest capacity rocket ever built, after Saturn V, Energia and N1, and the most powerful rocket in operation as of 2020. SpaceX conducted Falcon Heavy's first launch on February 6, 2018, at 3:45 p.m. EST (20:45 UTC). The rocket carried a Tesla Roadster belonging to SpaceX founder Elon Musk as a dummy payload into a path around the sun. The first commercial launch was on 11 April 2019, for Arabsat. It was a success.

Falcon Heavy was designed to carry humans into space, for example to the Moon and Mars, although as of February 2018, it is not certified and there are no plans to use it for crewed missions. It will instead be devoted to launching large satellites or space probes.

Related pages

SpaceX's Falcon Heavy overview page

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