Telescopes Track Tesla Roadster in Space

Live images of an unlikely nature surfaced over the weekend, showing a Made by Humans on Earth Tesla Roadster cruising on the dark highways of outer space, with the Starman dummy on board. True, the images, released by the Virtual Telescope Project, only show a white dot moving fast among other white dots, but we take their word for it.
Tesla Roadster in space 1 photo
Photo: SpaceX
The live broadcast of the Tesla was aired on Saturday, thanks to a series of real, robotic telescopes, remotely accessible online. According to the Virtual Telescope Project, and visible in the images, the car is quite bright, and it also moves faster than expected.

The telescopes will continue to track the Roadster through the stars, and images will be broadcasted both on the Project's webpage and on its Youtube page. Below is a video of the images captured on Saturday.

On Friday, NASA listed the Tesla Roadster on its HORIZONS Web-Interface as a spacecraft, revealing at the same time the light cargo carried by the car to the stars: a Hot Wheels toy model Roadster on the car's dash with a mini-Starman inside, a data storage device placed inside the vehicle contains a copy of Isaac Asimov's Foundation novels and the names of more than 6,000 SpaceX employees, etched on a plaque on the attachment fitting between the Falcon Heavy upper stage and the Tesla.

“Tesla Roadster (spacecraft). Dummy payload from the first launch of SpaceX Falcon Heavy launch vehicle. Consists of a standard Tesla Roadster automobile and a spacesuit-wearing mannequin nicknamed Starman," the NASA document reads.

As for where the Roadster will eventually end up, opinions are divided. The car will most surely not rendezvous with the Red Planet, as initially intended, but will likely enter a heliocentric orbit, circling the Sun.

It may, at some point in its million years journey, cross paths with Mars.

Images of the Roadster in space begin at minute 23:00 in the video below.

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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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