Elon Musk is South African-born American entrepreneur and businessman who founded the electronic-payment firm X.com in 1999 (which later became PayPal), formed SpaceX, maker of launch vehicles and spacecraft and works as chief executive officer of the electric car manufacturer Tesla.
As a child, Musk was lost in his daydreams about inventions and when he was 10, he developed an interest for computers and entrepreneurship. At age 12 he created a video game “Blastar” and sold it to a computer magazine.
Musk launched his first company, Zip2 Corporation, in 1995 with his brother, Kimbal Musk. A company provided maps and business directories to online newspapers such as The New York Times and the Chicago Tribune. In 1999, a division of Compaq Computer Corporation bought Zip2 for $307 million in cash and $34 million in stock options.
In 2002 he founded Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) to make more affordable rockets. Its first two rockets were the Falcon 1 (first launched in 2006) and the larger Falcon 9 (first launched in 2010), which were designed to cost much less than competing rockets. On May 22, 2012, Musk and SpaceX made history when the company launched a landmark commercial spacecraft with an unmanned capsule.
Musk had long been interested in the possibilities of electric cars, and in 2004 he became one of the major funders of Tesla Motors, an electric car company founded by entrepreneurs Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning. In 2006 Tesla introduced its first car, the Roadster, which could travel 245 miles (394 km) on a single charge. Unlike most previous electric vehicles, which Musk thought were stodgy and uninteresting, it was a sports car that could go from 0 to 60 miles (97 km) per hour in less than four seconds.
Now the company, like other projects of Elon Musk, continues to develop. In 2012 Tesla built stations called Superchargers in the United States and Europe designed for charging batteries quickly and at no extra cost to Tesla owners. Also in the February 2018 Tesla and SpaceX launched into space an electric sports car Tesla Roadster and the car became an artificial satellite of the Sun.