Billionaire entrepreneur, Elon Musk, sent his Tesla Roadster and driver mannequin named Starman into space on Tuesday in pursuit of making interplanetary travel a reality. The car was launched into space with the help of the technologically advanced Falcon Heavy rocket, but Elon announced that the car had missed it's target of Mars and was heading towards the asteroid belt.
Heading into a mass of swirling boulders isn't the only thing Elon should be concerned about. Experts say that the car will not last more than a year in space.
In an interview with Live Science, Indiana University chemist William Carroll said the car will eventually be cut up like a knife by radiation.
"All of the organics will be subjected to degradation by the various kinds of radiation that you will run into there. [Those materials] are made up of carbon-carbon bonds and carbon-hydrogen bonds. When you cut something with a knife, in the end, you're cutting some chemical bonds. Those organics, in that environment, I wouldn't give them a year."
Without any protection from radiation and the threat of a colliding asteroid, the scientific theory that ends the Roadster's trip may be true. People still agree that this is the coolest thing ever!
As the amazement subsided, the curiosity kicked in.
I believe none (correct me if i'm wrong) because it uses liquid oxygen and hydrogen for the fuel not CO2.— Izzie the Cannible (@Izgirl22) February 7, 2018
Still hard to believe you sent your personal car out into space. How long till you build something fast and efficient enough to catch up with and bring it all back?— Rex Litwiller (@ThinkFab) February 7, 2018
Is there a timeline? Curious how long this takes— Bob Mather Poker (@BobMatherPoker) February 7, 2018
Some people can't even believe this is happening and are even suspicious of the whole project.
Brian, question - I don't understand. The roadster left today and it already went past Mars? That far?... actually, way farther based on the diagram shared by Elon?...— Arturo (@arturot) February 7, 2018
Really, the Roadster just set path and speed … for orbital trajectory.— Brian_Henderson (@brian_henderson) February 7, 2018
But it essentially got to Mars-distance within hours? is that what I'm hearing?— Arturo (@arturot) February 7, 2018
No, it is on course towards Mars' orbit. The trip will take months. But there's no need to give it another push - the necessary direction and velocity is already there thanks to the last burn. And since it's space, the car won't slow down due to fraction or other forces.— András Velvárt (@vbandi) February 7, 2018
Even if the car does get sliced and diced by radiation within a year, what exciting times we live in!