Elon Musk seems quite proud of his company SpaceX’s new rocket engines.
This week, Musk showed off a batch of the new Raptor 2 engines at SpaceX Starbase’s Texas facility, where they will be used on the first orbital flight of the company’s Starship mega-rocket later this year.
“Raptor 2 rocket engines at Starbase, each producing over half a million pounds (230 tons) of force,” Musk wrote in the Twitter post on Tuesday (April 26). Musk’s photo showed what appeared to be more than a dozen new rocket engines, but his fans on Twitter saw something else: Doctor Who’s evil Daleks.
Raptor 2 rocket engines at Starbase each producing over half a million pounds (230 tons) of force pic.twitter.com/9ixxXXceG3April 26, 2022
“It was only a matter of time before he started building Daleks,” wrote Twitter user Richard Nellis how the term “Daleks” started trending after Musk’s photo was posted.
“Turns out Elon created Daleks. Elon IS Davros,” wrote Simonanother Twitter user, referring to the creator of the Dalek warriors, who reside inside machines bear some resemblance to a rocket engine nozzle.
It was only a matter of time before he started building Daleks. pic.twitter.com/YsefAt6DgLApril 26, 2022
It turns out that Elon created Daleks. Elon IS Davros. https://t.co/IwA6ID4wshApril 26, 2022
Here’s a look at Doctor Who’s Daleks. Do you think SpaceX’s Raptor 2 engines are similar?
At first I thought these were a bunch of daleks pic.twitter.com/zuRzlwYC4lApril 26, 2022
To be clear, Elon Musk didn’t create a race of evil warriors who scream “Exterminate!” while they rule the world. Raptor 2 will be the working engine for SpaceX’s Starship rockets and their massive Super Heavy boosters.
Each Super Heavy booster will be powered by 33 Raptor 2 engines, while the Starship vehicle will use nine Raptor 2 engines of its own. Like SpaceX’s veteran Merlin engines in its Falcon 9 rockets, the Raptor 2 is designed to be reusable, just like the Starship and Super Heavy vehicles.
Raptor 2 is powered by liquid methane and liquid oxygen, which is a new fuel for SpaceX. Their Falcon 9 rockets use liquid oxygen and rocket kerosene in their Merlin engines.
SpaceX has been developing its Raptor engines for several years, with the Raptor 2 as a result. It has a more streamlined design over SpaceX’s first version of the Raptor, including less complicated tubes and plumbing lines.
“The V1 kind of looks like a pile of Christmas tree spaghetti – lots of ‘fibbly’ bits. The V2 is very streamlined and at the same time increases the thrust,” Musk said in a Feb. 10 update.
It may be SpaceX’s work to streamline Raptor 2 that gave it a more Dalek-like resemblance to Doctor Who fans this week. Still, some fans of the sci-fi show were surprised that Musk didn’t target a villain other than the Who to emulate.
I always thought Elon Musk would create Cybermen before creating Daleks. pic.twitter.com/rGGFYoflsqApril 26, 2022
“I always thought Elon Musk would create Cybermen before creating Daleks.” wrote Geekgirlforever.