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For the first time, a starship prototype is roaring through life with three engines

As part of the starship program, SpaceX began testing with previous prototypes in late 2019 and early 2020, losing three vehicles during various source tests. In May, the company successfully tested the full-size tank area of ​​its Starship vehicle (SN4) for the first time with a single Raptor engine. It was later lost due to a floor-systems issue.

Then, In August, And Back in September, Which flew up to 150 meters in two different vehicles SN5 and SN6 short short hops. They looked like flying spray paint cans as they rose above the Texas coast, but they provided valuable experience for the company’s engineers who learned to control the aircraft’s Raptor engine and pushed pressure limits on its fuel tanks.

Since then, work has continued to develop the SN8 to build the highest aircraft. For this, SpaceX is needed to add large folds to the tank section, and a nose cone. This vehicle is similar to what the final starship vehicle would look like. It will eventually have six Raptor engines. It includes three engines that are optimized for propulsion at sea level, and are optimized for vacuuming in three large spaces.

Starship acts as a reusable upper stage as part of SpaceX’s next generation release system. It also includes a large rocket called the Super Heavy, which will propel the Starship into orbit. SpaceX staff at the Boca Sica work site have begun assembling the first of these super heavy test vehicles, which are likely to undergo a functional design process similar to the Starship, including some test failures.

The integrated deck of the rocket and its starship upper level may attempt an orbital flight soon next year. At a virtual meeting of the Society on Tuesday, Elon Musk, the company’s founder and chief engineer, said he was “80 to 90 percent confident” that the company would reach orbit with Starship in 2021.

SpaceX is counting on Starship to replace its workshop Falcon 9 rocket, which has become America’s most experienced rocket with 95 launches in a decade. Starship cargo missions and finally, big groups to SpaceX, Hope, Moon and Mars. NASA has given The company has a $ 135 million initial contract to study astronauts landing on the moon as part of its Artemis project.

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Phil Schwartz

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