It was a lot of build up for a little bit of flame, but a single-engine prototype of the rocket that Elon Musk hopes will take passengers to Mars one day was fired up for the very first time.
After weeks ofin Boca Chica, Texas, the SpaceX CEO confirmed that the "hopper" version of his Starship (formerly known as "BFR") completed a "tethered hop" on Wednesday evening.
SpaceX has used so-called hopper prototypes in the past to test its rockets. Basically, they're less powerful versions that don't travel all the way to space and then come back down for a landing. In this case, a "tethered hop" is really the same as a static or hold-down fire test, which is a standard procedure before most launches as well.
Interestingly, SpaceX was also supposed to conduct a set to happen Thursday, ahead of a planned launch on Sunday. This will be the first commercial launch for Falcon Heavy (it's carrying a commercial communications satellite to orbit) and the first we've seen of the powerful rocket since its .at Kennedy Space Center in Florida Wednesday. However, that test has been delayed once again and is now
The firing of the Starship prototype's Raptor engine was the first to be started up at the company's Texas launch pad. It seems Texas will be the home for Starship's development for the time being after a.
SpaceX needs to move Starship from this first test to mission-ready in less than four years. The company already has a paying customer in Japanese billionairein 2023.