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SpaceX’s first orbital Starship launch “highly likely” in November, says Elon Musk…
Huge Thanks To:
CEO Elon Musk says that it’s “highly likely” SpaceX will be ready to attempt its first orbital Starship launch in November 2022, and possibly as early as late October. But many major hurdles remain.
Adding to a welcome burst of insight into SpaceX’s fully-reusable Starship rocket program, Musk took to Twitter on September 21st to provide a bit more specific insight into the company’s next steps towards a crucial orbital launch debut. On September 19th, the CEO revealed that SpaceX would roll the Starship booster (B7) currently assigned to that debut back to the factory for mysterious “robustness upgrades” – an unexpected move right after a seemingly successful and record-breaking static fire test.
Two days later, Musk has indicated that those upgrades might involve fortifying Super Heavy Booster 7’s thrust section to ensure it can survive Raptor engine failures. With 33 Raptor V2 engines powering it and plenty of evidence that those Raptors are far from perfect reliability, the concern is understandable, even if the response is a bit different than SpaceX’s norm.
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