This is the first in a long line of bad luck events for Elon Musk. Space Exploration Technologies Corporation, SpaceX, specialized in revolutionary space technology, suffered a hard hit when the rocket carrying a satellite that Facebook was counting on to introduce service to regions in Africa. Despite the report stating no injuries, the company lost millions of dollars and the faith of their funders. Not only is this a setback for SpaceX, who have satellites propulsion on backorder for many, already paid groups, but for NASA as well, who relies on this privatized company to keep their International Space Station stocked with both supplies and astronauts.
Facebook spokesperson Chris Norton commented on the disappointment of the explosion and the setback that it had incurred, but ensured that they would keep strong in their quest to connect people to the internet around the world. Spacecom, the satellite’s operator based in Israel, said the destruction held a significant negative impact on the company and may deal a severing blow to this project.
Despite the horrific scene at the launch pad, NASA and government officials stated their faith remained with their private partner and business would still occur as normal. There was no slowing down for NASA, as they are scheduled to launch a shuttle carrying an asteroid chasing spacecraft to sample and bring back reports.
SpaceX had already conducted eight successful launches this year, with another nine to occur before year’s end. This schedule is being thoroughly looked over and may possibly be downsized to only three more launches to double and triple check safety securities.
"Despite the difficulties, commercial spaceflight will carry on with American drive and ingenuity,” said Rep. Lamar Smith, chairman of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee.
Next, Musk lost another $700 million due to a clerical issues while merging with SolarCity. As part owner of SolarCity, an energy provider based in California, Musk is being portrayed in a dark light for this deal. For investors in Tesla, this means a slight to median drop in stock prices as the “bailout” for a failing SolarCity takes its toll. The energy company has fallen under due to the cheap production of Asian solar panels, paired with lower subsidies for solar panels offered to owners. The market has dropped out from under their feet and they need something to stand on. Musk and Tesla are those steps. However, the merger is an ugly one. In the end, it may not help SolarCity substantially, most likely ending in a total failure. Conflict of interest is the name being pasted on the weak foundation of this deal. A deal between two companies governed by a single body: Musk.
To pile on top of these bad dealings and exploding rockets, Tesla’s stock fell 3% due to a supply and demand shortcoming in the market. Researchers speculate another 46% drop in the market before another upward trend takes root. Price is the dagger in the back of the new age electric car market. The cars are too expensive and the recharging process is both too hard to utilize and too few and far between to be effective. When gas stations litter the streets, are found on every corner and regulate pricing based on a market corner, how does a relatively new product (Tesla) compete? The population must come together and ‘vote’ on what is best for their community and overall best for the market. Will a Tesla and the electric vehicles emerge victorious, along with the new age transportation, or will things stay how they are…for now?