This morning the world witnessed an incredible and unique feat.
Elon Musk and SpaceX successfully launched the world's most powerful — and reusable! — rocket in the world, and in doing so sent a Tesla roadster into orbit around the sun that will take the car to the edge of Mars as it floats around space.
But as we're apt to do, the world can't help but ask: what's next?
The hero of today's launch, the Falcon Heavy, was designed from the outset to carry humans into space. The rocket is as powerful as those used in the Apollo missions and essentially restores the possibility of flying missions with crew to the moon or Mars.
Today's success gives SpaceX momentum to begin developing even larger rockets to fulfil Musk's lofty aspirations.
The SpaceX and Tesla boss is intent on establishing a city on the red planet, with hordes of Earthlings and mini habitable pods. The idea is that inhabitants and building materials will be flown there on an extra-mega SpaceX rocket that is still in development.
At the 68th annual meeting of the International Astronautical Congress in Adelaide in September last year, Musk described a new-generation rocket dubbed B.F.R. (Big F***ing Rocket) that his company was working on, which might be ready for launch in the mid 2020s.
It will be bigger, more powerful, be able to carry a heavier payload, and will ultimately replace the Falcon Heavy. While still theoretical, such a rocket will be integral to Musk's plan for an interplanetary transport system.
The fact that Falcon Heavy's maiden flight was a success will no doubt give SpaceX engineers confidence to take things to the next level.
The launch today was very near flawless. Two of the boosters - both recycled from previous launches - returned for side-by-side touchdowns at the Florida launch site.
However a few hours later, Musk told reporters that the third booster, brand new, missed its floating landing platform and slammed into the Atlantic Ocean at 480 kilometres an hour.
For now, the company will earn its crust by competing for contracts to launch satellites into orbit for governments and other private companies.
The beauty of building reusable rockets is you can put them straight back to work — and SpaceX already has customers lining up to take advantage of the Falcon Heavy with flights scheduled for later this year.
It is booked to send up a large communications satellite for Saudi Arabian company Arabsat sometime in the first half of 2018.
The private company's online flight manifest shows the US Air Force is also signed up.
SpaceX works closely with NASA and the US government wants to use the SpaceX rocket to launch a test payload for the US Air Force likely to occur sometime after June.
The launch will allow the Air Force to judge whether or not the Falcon Heavy is ready to fly national security payloads, which could become a big market for Elon Musk's SpaceX. The mission will include a probe from the Planetary Society called Lightsail which aims to test a large sail which uses the sun's radiation to propel the craft through space.
The Falcon Heavy is also expected to launch two more hefty satellites in the near future for British communications company Inmarsat and US company ViaSat.
Other aerospace companies are developing rockets and NASA is currently sinking billions of dollars into a massive new rocket called the Space Launch System, or SLS, that's meant to return astronauts to the moon and also get them one day to Mars.
However NASA's planned SLS rocket, a comparable system, is expected to cost about US$1.25 billion ($1.7b) per flight compared to the Falcon Heavy's US$144 million per launch. As a result, space could increasingly become the domain of private companies like SpaceX.
For now, the company is set to keep launching things into space and improve the capability and cost of its rockets to make the idea of space colonisation just a little bit more realistic.