[Pics] SpaceX debuts new rocket

SpaceX unveiled its new Falcon Heavy rocket a month before its first launch.

Photos posted by SpaceX chief executive Elon Musk show the new rocket inside its Florida hangar. Missing is the cargo for the January test flight. Musk has said the Falcon Heavy will launch his own cherry-red Tesla Roadster into space.

First, SpaceX will test-fire the rocket’s 27 engines at the pad; the company is aiming to do that by the end of the month. The launch is planned for a few weeks after the test.

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Falcon Heavy is essentially the company’s Falcon 9 times three. It features three Falcon 9 first-stage boosters joined together with a second-stage on the middle one. It also has three times more engines.

The Falcon 9 is now used to hoist satellites and supplies to the International Space Station.

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