03:42 GMT27 October 2020
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    Elon Musk’s SpaceX has successfully test fired its interplanetary Raptor engine he hopes will be able to put humans on Mars by 2024.

    “SpaceX propulsion just achieved the first firing of the Raptor interplanetary transport engine,” Elon Musk tweeted on Monday.

    Raptor is a new generation methane-fueled rocket engine designed expressly for the company’s upcoming gigantic Red Dragon rocket to ferry humans to the Red Planet.

    Raptor packs about three times more punch than the Merlin rockets that power SpaceX’s liquid oxygen-propelled Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets.

    The initial tests of the raptor engine were conducted at SpaceX’s state-of-the-art rocket development facility in McGregor, Texas.

    Elon Musk will  elaborate on his new-generation Mars-bound spaceship during an international conference on astronautics which opens in Mexico on Tuesday, Engadget Internet portal reported.

    Elon Musk founded SpaceX in 2002 with the goal of "enabling people to live on other planets," and in April announced that the company’s first unmanned mission to Mars would launch in 2018 using his company’s Falcon heavy rocket.

    He said he is motivated to live long enough to die on Mars, which he believes will be colonized by humans who seek a direct, rather than a representative, democracy.

    Related:

    Mars 'Ain't No Limit': Elon Musk Envisions Future Colonization of Space
    Elon Musk's Crazy Super-Fast Hyperloop Idea Gets First Test in Nevada
    Tags:
    new-generation spaceship, interplanetary flights, engine test, Merlin, Red Dragon, Raptor, SpaceX Falcon 9, SpaceX, Elon Musk, US
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