Elon Musk found himself being corrected on Twitter by a Harvard University professor no less after tweeting that his car is orbiting Mars.
The car in question is the Tesla Roadster, which was launched into orbit in 2018. The Tesla CEO tweeted that the car was orbiting the Red Planet, only to be connected by Harvard professor Jonathan McDowell.
McDowell corrected Musk in a reply to the latter's tweet, saying that the Tesla Roadster is technically not orbiting the Red Planet. To prove his point, the Harvard professor followed up with an illustration showing the current positions of Earth, Mars, and the SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket currently carrying the Roadster.
Elon Musk Gets Corrected by Harvard Professor
Well, no. It's orbiting the Sun, and occasionally passes the orbit of Mars. Not the same thing.— Jonathan McDowell (@planet4589) December 4, 2021
Elon Musk has been corrected by a Harvard University professor over his tweet that reads "My car is currently orbiting Mars." The correction to his tweet was made by Jonathan McDowell, who works at Harvard's Center for Astrophysics, according to a report by Futurism. McDowell replied to Musk's tweet, saying that the car actually orbits the sun and, while doing so, occasionally passes the orbit of Mars. "Not the same thing," the Harvard professor pointed out. The Futurism report notes that it is hard to tell why Musk posted that tweet to begin with. "Perhaps it was an oversimplification he thought readers would better understand, or maybe he thought they'd just let him get away with a tweet clearly aimed at marketing the Tesla brand," the report says. It also acknowledges the possibility that Musk could also be trolling.
The Tesla Orbiting the Sun
Since it came up today: here is the current position of the Falcon Heavy 001 second stage, with Elon Musk's Tesla bolted to its nose, together with the current positions of Earth and Mars. pic.twitter.com/HSFZveq6jJ— Jonathan McDowell (@planet4589) December 5, 2021
The car being talked about by both Musk and McDowell is actually the Tesla Roadster, which was launched into orbit in 2018 by a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket. According to the Futurism report, the Roadster is still attached to the Falcon Heavy.
Inside the Roadster is a mannequin driver named Starman. Elon Musk said in October of last year that both the Roadster and its passenger made their first close pass by Mars.
In a tweet published to his personal Twitter account, McDowell shared an illustration of the current position of the Falcon Heavy rocket that the Tesla Roadster is attached to.
The illustration shows the current positions of both our planet as well as that of Mars.
According to the Futurism report, there have been concerns that the Tesla Roadster will eventually crash either on Earth or on Mars. Per the report, there is actually only a six percent chance that it could happen in the next one million years.
Should it enter the Earth's atmosphere, the Tesla vehicle would very likely burn up.
This article is owned by Tech Times
Written by Isabella James