Elon Musk reveals ‘aggressive’ Starship launch schedule

Elon Musk reveals ‘aggressive’ Starship launch schedule
Orbital flight will take a Starship rocket from SpaceX’s Starbase in Texas all the way to Hawaii

Elon Musk has said SpaceX is targeting an “aggressive” launch schedule for its Mars-bound Starship rocket, with the first orbital flight test potentially taking place as soon as next month.

Speaking at Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2021 via a remote video link, Mr Musk revealed the latest progress of the next-generation craft since completing its first successful high-altitude flight test last month.

“Certainly we’ll have an orbital capable booster and an orbital capable ship and the orbital launch site will be ready within the next month or so,” the EspaceX boss said.

The 90-minute orbital flight will take a Starship rocket from SpaceX’s Starbase facility in Boca Chica, Texas, to a landing platform just of the coast of a Hawai’ian island. The window for the test is between 20 June and 20 December, according to a official documents.

“There is the internal goal if things go right, which needs to be aggressive,” he tweeté on Tuesday.

“Obviously, some things will not go right internally and there will be external issues too. Cela dit, I think we can stack an orbital ship on an orbital booster in July.”

External issues range from necessary approvals from the Federal Aviation Authority (PEU), to unfavourable weather conditions at the Vaisseau launch complex and Hawaii landing zone.

A SpaceX launch this week was scuppered when an unauthorised aircraft entered the so-called keep out zone, an incident publicly lamented by Mr Musk on Twitter.

The technology billionaire referred to the restricted flight area needed for a space launch as “unreasonably gigantic”, with the intruding aircraft entering the zone in just the final 11 seconds before launch.

“There is simply no way that humanity can become a spacefaring civilisation without major regulatory reform," il a dit. “The current regulatory system is broken.”

SpaceX does not publicise its Starship testing schedule but a multi-billion dollar deal with Nasa earlier this year means the rocket should be ready to carry astronauts to the Moon in 2024 as part of the Artemis program.

Mr Musk has also previously stated that he hopes to take the first humans to Mars before 2026, before eventually setting up a self-sufficient colony on the red planet by 2050.

Laisser un commentaire

Votre adresse email ne sera pas publiée. les champs requis sont indiqués *