SpaceX celebrates successfully launching a Tesla roadster into space

There's a Starman waiting in the sky and he's sitting in a Tesla bound for Mars.  

The world's most powerful rocket blasted off on Wednesday, with Space X claiming a mostly successful test launch for its Falcon Heavy rocket.

But sending the first car into space isn't the impressive bit, they also managed to pull off the synchronised landing of its boosters.

Two used rocket boosters returning from space, landing upright in perfect synchronisation could be a scene taken straight from a sci-fi film.

But it wasn't a CGI creation - it's part of the Falcon Heavy rocket's maiden launch on Wednesday from Florida's Cape Canaveral.

The rocket itself is twice as powerful as any other in use today and the biggest since the Saturn Five, which sent astronauts to the moon. 

"It can launch things direct to Pluto - and beyond," said SpaceX CEO Elon Musk.

"No stop needed."

Wednesday's launch even had some Kiwi assistance.

An AUT radio telescope in Warkworth helped track the rocket and relayed data to Space X as it flew over New Zealand.

"It goes from there, to our telescope then back to their screen then to the whole world," said Professor Sergei Gulyaev from the AUT Institute for Radio Astronomy & Space.

For two years Space X has been mastering the art of guiding spent Falcon 9 boosters back to earth to be resued.

Engineers were even more ambitious today, with two boosters landing back at Kennedy Space Centre and a third aimed at a floating barge, although it missed its target.

"Apparently it hit the water at 300 miles an hour and took out two of the engines on the drone ship," said Musk.

Due to the high failure rate of first test flights, Mr Musk forewent a valuable payload and instead executed an astronomical vanity project.

In the nose of the rocket was another one of his inventions, a cherry-red Tesla electric roadster.  

"You can tell it's real because it looks so fake," Mr Musk said.

"Would've had way better CGI if it was fake."

The car with a dummy astronaut driver will now spend up to a billion years in an orbit around the sun, hurtling towards Mars.

With David Bowie's "Space Oddity" on loop on the car stereo and a message on its circuit-board for anyone or anything that it bumps into.