Starman and the red Tesla flew close to Mars for the first time

A red Tesla with a Starman dummy, launched during SpaceX’s epic flight, has just made its first flight past Mars.

The machine, which is still sweeping through space, has for the first time approached the Red Planet less than 5 million miles.

Tesla Roadster with a dummy was launched in February 2018 during the test launch of the powerful Falcon Heavy rocket. And the roadster has just reached a big milestone in its space travel.

“Starman, who was last seen leaving Earth, made the first approach to Mars – within 0.05 AU,” SpaceX reported. One astronomical unit is the average distance from the Earth to the Sun.

Starman and the machine orbit the Sun every 557 Earth days. To date, a car and its “driver” have traveled nearly 1.3 billion miles in space – enough to travel on all roads on Earth more than 57 times. Its probability of colliding with Earth or Venus in the next million years is only 6% and 2.5%, respectively.