Falcon Heavy Rocket Is Major Gamble For SpaceX Written 5 February 2018

The Wall Street Journal reports that SpaceX’s anticipated Falcon Heavy rocket – which is scheduled for its first flight Tuesday – faces an uncertain commercial market and does not immediately factor into US plans to ferry astronauts to the International Space Station or on lunar and deep-space missions. Although initially developed to overcome the problem of weaker boosters, commercial demand for heavy-lift rockets has declined as both military and commercial satellites have continued to shrink in size and small satellites have grown in popularity. Additionally, Space X CEO Elon Musk anticipates that the company’s Big Falcon Rocket also in development will be its chosen vehicle for manned Mars missions. However, the Falcon Heavy is advertised as costing just $100 million per mission, with twice the cargo capacity of its closest competitor at a quarter the cost. American University space historian Howard McCurdy argues that such a rocket may make a permanent lunar base economically feasible.
More Info (Wall Street Journal)