Inside SpaceX, the Willy Wonka-Like Rocket Factory That Eventually Could Send Astronauts to Space
Elon Musk's SpaceX hosted an open house here Monday, offering a rare peek inside the Willy Wonka-like rocket factory that also serves as a museum of sorts to SpaceX's 16-year history. Inside, next to its mission control centre, is a charred spacecraft hanging from the rafters, the first commercial capsule to reach orbit and return. But on Monday there was something else on the factory floor: the quartet of NASA astronauts SpaceX plans to fly as soon as next year, who were greeted by a thundering applause by throngs of SpaceX employees, many decked out in matching SpaceX T-shirts. The first four NASA commercial crew astronauts assigned to SpaceX are Bob Behnken (from left), Doug Hurley, Mike Hopkins and Victor GloverPhoto Credit: Washington Post photo by Jonathan Newton. The astronauts' presence augurs a significant point in the future of SpaceX, founded by Musk in 2002 with the goal of making space accessible to large numbers of people, and eventually colonising Mars.