Elon Musk thanks Russian space chief for home visit invite: ‘Thanks! What is your favorite tea?’

FILE PHOTO: SpaceX founder and chief engineer Elon Musk looks at his mobile phone during a post-launch news conference to discuss the SpaceX Crew Dragon astronaut capsule in-flight abort test at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida, U.S. January 19, 2020. REUTERS/Steve Nesius/File Photo

Technology billionaire Elon Musk thanked Russian space chief Dmitry Rogozin for inviting him to his home.

Musk, founder of Tesla and SpaceX, responded on Tuesday to comments Rogozin made to CNN in his first interview with Western media since assuming his role as Roscosmos director general.

“Mr. Elon Musk realizes many of the ideas and thoughts that we wanted to realize but did not get to because, after the breakup of the Soviet Union, our space program halted for some time,” Rogozin said. “We respect him as an organizer of the space industry and as an inventor who is not afraid to take risk.”

Rogozin invited Musk “to be a guest of my family” and talk about “exploring the universe, extraterrestrial life, and how we can use space to preserve life on Earth.”

“I already set the teakettle on heat,” Rogozin added.

In response, Musk tweeted: “Thanks! What is your favorite tea?”

Last year, Rogozin took a shot at Musk’s SpaceX, posting a picture of Roscosmos specialists recovering a piece of a rocket in the middle of Russia’s remote and snow-covered Yakutia region.

“This is not Boca Chica,” Rogozin posted along with the picture, referring to where SpaceX was working on a project in Texas. “This is Yakutia in winter. I wonder if gentle SpaceX is able to work in such conditions?”



The United States placed sanctions on the Russian space program and Rogozin in 2014, responding to the invasion of Crimea. That came even as U.S. astronauts relied on Russian Soyuz rockets to get to the International Space Station after the U.S. shuttered its space shuttle program in 2011.

“After analyzing the sanctions against our space industry, I suggest to the USA to bring their astronauts to the International Space Station using a trampoline,” Rogozin tweeted in a jab at the sanctions.

Last year, Musk responded to that tweet following the launch of SpaceX’s first crewed mission with a Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon capsule from U.S. soil.

“The trampoline is working,” he quipped.

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