Who is Elon Musk? He is a prominent entrepreneur, venture capitalist, and business magnate. He is the CEO, founder, and chief executive officer of SpaceX; inventor, designer, programmer, and CEO of Tesla, Inc.; product architect and designer of the electric automobile firm, and owner of The Boeing Company.
At the age of 34, he founded PayPal with Marc Andreessen and PayPal went public in the year 1997. Two years later, he founded Hyperloop, a high-speed rail idea. He also invested in several businesses including SolarBotanic, whose stock price has shot up almost as high as Apple’s. His net worth is estimated to be in the range of six figures, based on the net worth of other tech billionaire Peter Thiel. He also owns an interest in several high-end private space exploration ventures, among them, Blue Origin, that seeks to use technology to colonize space. In January 2021, Musk bought a majority stake in PayPal, making him a mega-Billionaire.
Musk is originally from South Africa. As a young boy, he used his allowance money to build his own rocket, which he hoped would one day send humans to the moon. He launched his first rocket, the sounding-beep Test, on August 24, 1970. The rocket malfunctioned during the second launch attempt, causing the loss of the only experimental spacecraft ever launched to the moon, the goodwill NASA vehicle. Although Musk later said that he would try to launch a rocket again, he never did, perhaps for the reasons of trying too hard.
Musk later launched the space shuttle and then the internet company, PayPal, making Musk even richer. However, he has not entirely ruled out sending people to space in the near future. “I think it’s quite possible in five or ten years’ time,” he told reporters on a conference call, without giving any more details.
Who is Elon Musk? Well, he is a birthing engineer, and he likes to joke that his family would be considered “the greatest family in the history of the human race.” He has a degree from Harvard University in engineering, but is originally from South Africa. From a personal standpoint, he does have an interesting background, having grown up in a rather poor family. It is well documented that his father, who was a mining engineer, was fired from NASA after complaining publicly about the cost of the space program, which he felt was being wasted by not using technology to explore space. Musk does not seem to mind his father’s stance on the matter.
He went to school at nearby Stanford, earning a bachelor of science degree in aeronautics and a master’s in applied physics, but did not graduate. However, he did learn Japanese in two days. The next step for him was to work on rocket designs and missile launches for NASA, although he left NASA after only two years because he felt the agency was focusing too much on human space travel. Nevertheless, he was hired by PayPal to work on its space exploration programs.
When will we see this innovative entrepreneur in action? On February 7th, Musk will be hosting a press conference to discuss the prospects of sending people to Mars. He will join other space industry heavy-weights like NASA in discussing how to use technology to further the exploration of our great space frontier. A few weeks later, on the same day that he will be taking his own company launched by his new company, he will be appearing at the International Astronautical congress in Washington, D.C. to address the issue of space exploration and how his new company can help make it happen.
Where is all this going? Well, right now, he is focused on getting his company off the ground, which could happen as early as this summer. Two to three years after that, he envisions having 1 million people living and working in space. And then what will he do? He’ll be using his expertise to launch another successful space exploration project. And if all goes according to plan, he’ll then be able to send people to an asteroid that is larger than 8 miles in diameter and one which are headed for destruction.