Ilona Maska’s SpaceX spacecraft has assembled the very heavy Starship launch vehicle, which is to be used for flights to the Moon and Mars. They want to put it into orbit this year, though Musk isn’t sure he’ll be successful the first time around.
This was reported on SpaceX.
On the evening of February 10 (or early in the morning of February 11 in Kiev), the company held an official presentation of the most ambitious Starship project – a rocket to bypass the American Saturn 5 rocket, which once took people to the moon.
The superhero Starship combines two functions: the second stage, which is used to achieve orbital velocity when launched from Earth, and the reusable Super Heavy spacecraft, which is able to take off, fly through space and perform a guided landing. The Super Heavy launch vehicle will only be used as the first stage of the launch from Earth.
SpaceX first combined these two parts, the Super Heavy Booster 4 and the Starship 20, in August 2021. Together, they are 120 meters long. After that, the missile was again disassembled for further testing of individual elements.
Starship is now fully connected. Its parts were connected not by a crane, as in the previous time, but by the service tower of the orbital launch complex, which was called “Mehazilla”. The missiles will “pick up” when they return to Earth.
SpaceX even showed an animated video of the Starship’s manned flight to Mars (already with human colonies), as well as refueling in orbit and the return of the first stage of the Super Heavy to Earth.
The spacecraft’s first orbital flight is expected in the coming months. However, you must first obtain permission from the US Federal Aviation Administration. Decisions on mandatory environmental expertise must be made by February 28.
During the presentation, Musk also said that during the development of the Raptor 2 engines for the Super Heavy launch vehicle, there were difficulties due to the melting inside the engine chambers due to overheating. However, the company said it is close to fixing the issue.
Earlier, Musk said he was not sure the spacecraft would successfully enter orbit on the first try, but he was “confident” that the rocket would go into space in 2022.
The Starship will eventually become a replacement for the Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy missiles currently in use. This launch vehicle should be one of those that will be delivered to the Moon by 2022 “The First Woman and the Later Men” Under the Artemis program of the US National Space Agency (NASA).