Who Is Elon Musk?
Elon Musk(born June 28, 1971, Pretoria, South Africa) is a South African-born American entrepreneur and businessman who founded X.com in march 1999 (which later became PayPal), SpaceX in 2002 and Tesla Motors in July 2003.
Elon Musk was born on June 28, 1971, in Pretoria, Transvaal, South Africa,the son of a South African father and a Canadian mother.He has one younger brother and sister. When he was 10, Musk developed an interest in computers.He taught himself how to program, and when he was 12 he sold his first software: a game he created called Blastar to PC and Office Technology magazine for approximately $500.In 1988, after obtaining a Canadian passport, Musk left South Africa.
After obtaining a Canadian passport, Musk entered Queen’s University in1989, avoiding mandatory service in the South African military.He left in 1992 to study economics and physics at the University of Pennsylvania; he graduated in 1997 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics from Wharton and a Bachelor of Science degree in physics from the College of Arts and Sciences.
In 1994, Musk held two internships in Silicon Valley during the summer: at an energy storage start-up called Pinnacle Research Institute and at the Palo Alto-based start-up Rocket Science Games.
In 1995, Musk and his brother, Kimbal, started Zip2, a web software company, with money raised from a small group of angel investors.An online city guide, Zip2 was soon providing content for the new websites of both The New York Times and the Chicago Tribune.Musk’s attempts to become CEO were thwarted by the board.Compaq acquired Zip2 for US$307 million in cash and $34 million in stock options.
X.com and PayPal
In 1999, Elon and Kimbal Musk used the money from their sale of Zip2 to found X.com, an online financial services/payments company.One year later, the company merged with Cofinity which had a money-transfer service called PayPal.The merged company focused on the PayPal service and was renamed PayPal in 2001.
In October 2002, Musk earned his first billion when PayPal was acquired by eBay for $1.5 billion in stock. Before the sale, Musk owned 11 percent of PayPal stock.
Musk founded his third company called SpaceX(Space Exploration Technologies Corporation) in 2002. The main aim of the company is to make more affordable rockets. SpaceX develops and manufactures space launch vehicles with a focus on advancing the state of rocket technology.
The company’s first two launch vehicles were the Falcon 1 and Falcon 9 rockets (a nod to Star Wars’ Millennium Falcon), and its first spacecraft was the Dragon (a nod to Puff the Magic Dragon).
SpaceX designed a family of launch vehicles and the Dragon multipurpose spacecraft over a span of seven years. In September 2008, SpaceX’s Falcon 1 rocket became the first privately funded liquid-fueled vehicle to put a satellite into Earth orbit.
SpaceX has announced the successor to the Falcon 9 and the Falcon Heavy: the Super Heavy–Starship system. The Super Heavy first stage would be capable of lifting 100,000 kg (220,000 pounds) to low Earth orbit.
SpaceX is both the largest private producer of rocket engines in the world and holder of the record for the highest thrust-to-weight ratio for a rocket engine.
Starting in 2011, SpaceX received funding under NASA’s Commercial Crew Development program, to develop the Dragon 2 crew capsule. A contract to provide crew flights to the ISS was awarded in 2014.
In March 2017, SpaceX saw the successful test flight and landing of a Falcon 9 rocket made from reusable parts, a development that opened the door for more affordable space travel.
In 2017 SpaceX launched 18 successful missions, more than doubling their highest previous year of 8.
Space X’s goal is to reduce the cost of human spaceflight by a factor of 10.On May 30, 2020.SpaceX launched its first manned flight called Demo-2 becoming the first private company to both place a person into orbit and to eventually dock a manned space-craft with the ISS. Further, the launch was the first time since the end of the Shuttle Program that an American Astronaut has been launched from American soil on an American rocket.
Musk is the co-founder, CEO and product architect at Tesla Motors, a company formed in 2003. Tesla Motors first built an electric sports car, the Tesla Roadster, in 2008,a sports car capable of accelerating from 0 to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds, as well as traveling nearly 250 miles between charges of its lithium ion battery. Total car sales of about 2,500 vehicles to 31 countries.
In 2010 the company’s initial public offering raised about $226 million. Two years later Tesla introduced the Model S sedan, which was acclaimed by automotive critics for its performance and design.
In January 2019, Musk traveled to China for the groundbreaking of Tesla’s Shanghai Gigafactory, which is the company’s first large-scale plant outside the U.S.
In March 2019, the model Y small SUV/CUV was unveiled.Later that year in November, Musk unveiled the Tesla Cybertruck, an all-electric battery-powered pickup truck.