SpaceX and the Pentagon have just signed a contract for the joint development of a new rocket capable of launching into space and carrying up to 80 tons of cargo and weapons anywhere in the world in just one hour.
Rocket tests should start as early as next year, Business Insider relationships. It is expected to carry weapons around the world 15 times faster than existing aircraft, such as the US C-17 Globemaster.
“He plans to move the equivalent of a C-17 payload anywhere in the world in less than an hour,” General Stephen Lyons, chief of the US Transportation Command, said in a conference Wednesday.
The new contract is further proof that SpaceX is engaging heavily in military partnerships. Earlier this week, the private space company won a contract with the Army̵
Previously, the military turned to SpaceX to transform its Starlink broadband satellite constellation into a new military navigation network, and earlier this year Space Force officials let slip that they were already working closely with SpaceX after awarding the company a contract in August, BI relationships.
Rhymes of history
The new weapons delivery system resembles a militarized version of something the SpaceX CEO proposed in 2017 when he talked about passenger space travel.
Then, Musk proposed to launch the passengers into space and then quickly land them closer to their destination. The new plan is very similar, only with weapons rather than with people.
READ MORE: The U.S. military and Elon Musk are designing a 7,500 mph rocket that can deliver weapons anywhere in the world in one hour[[[[Business Insider]
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