Elon Musk has sent his Tesla Roadster into space in the nose of his new SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket.
The car, Musk’s own example of his car company's first model, is mounted in the tip of the new rocket and is being thrust into an orbit around the Sun.
During the launch this evening, the car was captured on camera playing David Bowie’s Space Oddity through its sound system. It features a copy of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and a towel with ‘Don’t Panic’ (from the story) on it in the glovebox. A dummy wearing a SpaceX suit is sat in the driver’s seat (see gallery).
The Roadster has first entered a Low Earth Orbit attached to the rocket, but after passing through the Van Allen radiation belt (a potentially dangerous region held in place by our planet’s magnetic field) it will head towards Mars. The car will then be released from the rocket and pass close to the red planet on its own.