SpaceX begins preparations for the first orbital flight of the Starship spacecraft

By / In celadon / 0 Comments

Yesterday, May 13, Elon Musk’s private space company SpaceX filed

According to the «flight profile», the Starship-Super Heavy system should be launched from the #starbase cosmodrome (Boca Chica), after which, after 170 seconds of flight, Super Heavy and Starship will separate, and the launch vehicle should land in the Gulf of Mexico, probably on the already prepared by this time a new platform.

Starship will fly further, and, without completing a full revolution around the Earth, after about 90 minutes it should enter the atmosphere and splash down about 100 km. off the northwest coast of Kauai. So far, the application does not say anything about the presence of a landing barge at the proposed landing site.

It is likely that for this test Starship product, this will initially be a one-way flight. Based on what Musk wrote today, the purpose of the launch will be to test the strength characteristics of the ship upon entry into the atmosphere. And, of course, the reliability of the engines and the attitude control system.

Elon Musk urges SpaceX engineers to speed up the development of Starship «quickly and immediately.» Therefore, we see that instead of many years of simulations on computers, one after another there are flights of test products, on which the most important elements of the system are honed in real operation. The upcoming first orbital flight, of course, will be a major event in the world of cosmonautics and in the media sphere. But for SpaceX, this is, first of all, the collection of the most important data on the dynamics of the entry into the atmosphere of the largest spacecraft ever built. Let me remind you that it is about the height of a 15-16-storey building. With a high degree of probability, it can be assumed that, as in the case of the first 10-kilometer Starship «jumps», the first orbital flights will end with the loss of the test product. But real tests, SpaceX emphasizes, provide immeasurably more data than calculations at the table. And it is likely that on about the fourth or fifth flight, everything will go as it should, as the creators of the Starship-Super Heavy system intend.

After #blue origin Jeff Bezos and Leidos Dynetics filed protests against SpaceX’s #nasa contract to develop a lunar spacecraft under the HLS program, Elon Musk and SpaceX need to prove in practice that they received the contract not for «beautiful eyes», but deservedly.

The next step will be testing of #super heavy LV prototypes, and orbital tests of the entire system should become the crown of the entire test program.

So, there is a very interesting #space race ahead of us. Although, Musk himself said that he wants real space races. But competitors so far are not responding with flights of real products, but with lawsuits. I would say that this is not # fair play.


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