Tsiolkovsky rocket

(L) A memorial to Konstantin Tsiolkovsky in Kaluga, Russia. Sputnik; (R) FILE PHOTO. SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket . Getty Images / NASA
South African-born entrepreneur Elon Musk has revealed his admiration for the USSR's space program and its achievements, telling Russian students he had named some of his company's conference rooms after Soviet engineers.

Speaking to the New Knowledge event via video link on Friday, the creator of SpaceX noted his reverence for Sergey Korolev and Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, two influential 20th-century pioneers.

"[Tsiolkovsky] was amazing. He was truly one of the greatest," the entrepreneur said. "At SpaceX, we name our conference rooms after the great engineers and scientists of space, and one of our biggest conference rooms is named after Tsiolkovsky. And [another after] Korolev."

Musk also had kind words to say about the Soviet space program as a whole, noting that he admired the achievements of the USSR in the field of rocket science.

The SpaceX creator has long had an interest in Russia, and has previously shown reverence for its accomplishments in the cosmos. Last year, a tweet to the head of Moscow's space agency, Dmitry Rogozin, went viral after Musk replied in Russian. "We hope for mutually beneficial and prosperous long-term cooperation," the tech billionaire wrote.


The Twitter post came after Musk's successful SpaceX launch, when his company sent the Crew Dragon capsule on its maiden voyage to the International Space Station (ISS). It marked the first time since 2011 that NASA had sent its astronauts into space on a US-made spacecraft.

Earlier this year, it was revealed that cosmonaut Sergey Korsakov would become the first Russian to fly to the ISS in a SpaceX craft.


Putin to meet Musk?


Putin Musk

(L) Vladimir Putin. Sputnik / MIKHAIL KLIMENTYEV; (R) Elon Musk. Getty Images / Saul Martinez
A meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and space entrepreneur Elon Musk has not yet been arranged, but Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has revealed he hopes that a discussion between the two men will happen soon.

Speaking on Friday at an educational conference called 'New Knowledge,' at which Peskov introduced Musk's address to a crowd of students, Putin's press secretary explained that the Kremlin is open to a potential chat with the entrepreneur.

"We hope to have [a meeting] eventually," Peskov said, noting that preparations haven't started and a format is yet to be determined.

The idea for a meeting between Musk and Putin was initially proposed by the South African-born SpaceX creator in February, when he wrote to the Kremlin's official Twitter account suggesting a chat on the app Clubhouse.


"Would you like join me for a conversation on Clubhouse?" he tweeted." It would be a great honor to speak to you."

In response, Peskov suggested that Putin would be open to the idea.

"First, we need to understand what it'll be. You know that President Putin does not use social networks, and does not personally run the accounts," Peskov said on Monday.

"In general, it is a very interesting proposal, but we need to first understand what he means, what is proposed."