February 24, 2018

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Watch live as Elon Musk's Tesla disappears into deep space – CNET

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The Tesla Roadaster as seen by the Tenagra Observatories on Feb. 12. The thin red lines point to the car. Red circle added by Amanda Kooser/CNET.

Gianluca Masi (The Virtual Telescope Project)/Michael Schwartz (Tenagra Observatories)

Your plans for Valentine’s Day should include a romantic dinner, a box of dark chocolates, and a live viewing of Elon Musk’s SpaceX-launched red Tesla Roadster flying away into the distant darkness of space. 

The Virtual Telescope Project, a group that offers real-time internet access to robotic telescopes, will broadcast a live stream of the Tesla at 4:15 AM PT (12:15 p.m. UTC for those of you around the globe) on Wednesday. 

The Virtual Telescope Project has been tracking the Tesla since soon after the car was launched by the powerful SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket on Feb. 6. The roadster appears as a bright dot in the telescope images, like a moving star. 

The live view Wednesday will probably be our last good look at the electric car. The Virtual Telescope Project notes it’s very dim and is “going to be invisible soon.” The live stream — called “Goodbye, Tesla Roadster!” — will be broadcast on the project’s webTV page.

The project’s latest Tesla update from Monday shows the roadster looking fainter than before against a field of stars. The image comes from the Tenagra Observatories in Arizona and comes from a 300-second exposure. The Tesla, with the spacesuit-wearing Starman on board, was estimated to be over 1 million miles (1.7 million kilometers) away at the time.

Barring it becoming sentient and returning to Earth or crashing into something, the roadster will likely live out its days in orbit around the sun. Valentine’s Day will be your best chance to bid it a fond farewell. 

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