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Friday, September 24, 2021
SpaceX working toward early Tuesday morning Starship launch [Updated]

SpaceX working toward early Tuesday morning Starship launch [Updated]

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SpaceX's Starship SN11 on Pad B in South Texas awaiting launch. In the distance, the first Super Heavy booster prototype (BN1) continues stacking operations. Trevor Mahlmann A photo of the rocket on March 16. Trevor Mahlmann Close-up images of the nose cone flaps. Trevor Mahlmann SN11 may be ready to fly on March 26. Trevor…
Starship goes up. Starship goes down. But is the program moving forward?

Starship goes up. Starship goes down. But is the program moving...

This gallery of SN10 images shows the vehicle's flight on Wednesday. Trevor Mahlmann The vehicle launched from South Texas, one month after the flight of SN9. Trevor Mahlmann First, one engine went out. Trevor Mahlmann Then two. Trevor Mahlmann Then Starship began the process of reorienting itself. Trevor Mahlmann With all three Raptor engines off,…
SpaceX set for its third major Starship flight test on Wednesday

SpaceX set for its third major Starship flight test on Wednesday

Enlarge / Starship SN10 on the pad on Wednesday, March 3, 2021.Trevor Mahlmann SpaceX may launch its third full-scale Starship prototype—named Serial Number 10, or SN10—as early as Wednesday from South Texas. With this vehicle, the company will seek to successfully land the Starship vehicle where the last two versions, SN8 and SN9, each failed…
Putting the latest Starship crash into perspective—it’s “stupidly difficult”

Putting the latest Starship crash into perspective—it’s “stupidly difficult”

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Liftoff of SN9 sure looked fine on Tuesday afternoon. Three Raptor engines burning, taking the vehicle toward 10km. Trevor Mahlmann The problem came during the engine relighting sequence. Trevor Mahlmann SN9 met an unhappy ending on Tuesday afternoon. SN10 stands nearby, perhaps a bit nervous. Once again, on Tuesday afternoon, a Starship prototype soared into…
What’s really going on with Elon Musk, the FAA, and Starship?

What’s really going on with Elon Musk, the FAA, and Starship?

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Enlarge / Starship prototype SN9 has not launched yet. SpaceX There were moments of high drama on Thursday afternoon, and again Friday morning, in South Texas. For two days in a row, SpaceX evacuated the handful of residents remaining in Boca Chica Village. Sheriff's deputies cleared beaches and closed roads. And at the company's launch…
Hold the phone—SpaceX is fueling Starship on Thursday afternoon [Updated]

Hold the phone—SpaceX is fueling Starship on Thursday afternoon [Updated]

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Enlarge / SpaceX believes its SN9 prototype is ready to take to the skies. Update 3pm EST Thursday: SpaceX is loading its Starship SN9 prototype with propellant on Thursday afternoon. That much we know. But whether this is for a "wet dress rehearsal," a static fire test, or an actual launch, who knows. After the…
Sidewalk-robot startup celebrates 1 million deliveries

Sidewalk-robot startup celebrates 1 million deliveries

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Last March, just as the Washington, DC, area was locking down for COVID-19, I traveled to George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, to eat a hamburger delivered by a robot. The robot was owned by delivery startup Starship. Today, Starship announced that it has completed 1 million deliveries. Annika Keeton, a college student in Bowling Green, Ohio,…
SpaceX hot fire tests its Starship vehicle three times in four hours

SpaceX hot fire tests its Starship vehicle three times in four...

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Enlarge / The Sun glints around the lower fin of Starship SN8 on Dec. 9, 2020.Trevor Mahlmann On Wednesday, in South Texas, SpaceX fired up its newest Starship prototype not once or twice. Rather, engineers and technicians fueled and test fired their SN9 prototype and its Raptor rocket engines three times in less than four…
An early version of Starship takes its first, tentative steps off Earth

An early version of Starship takes its first, tentative steps off...

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Ignition! Starhopper looks on as SN5 lifts off for its 150m hop test. Trevor Mahlmann Roger, roger, SN5—we see you hovering clear five by. Trevor Mahlmann SN5. In flight. Over Texas. Trevor Mahlmann Turning to orient for landing. Trevor Mahlmann SN5 coming in for a landing. Those legs! Just so we're clear about this, SpaceX…
SpaceX completes static fire of Starship prototype, will hop next

SpaceX completes static fire of Starship prototype, will hop next

Enlarge / Overhead view of SN5 static fire test on Thursday. After scrubbing several attempts for weather concerns, technical issues, and even a range violation due to a nearby boat, SpaceX succeeded in static-fire testing the latest prototype of its Starship vehicle on Thursday. At 3:02pm local time in South Texas, the single Raptor engine…

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