SpaceX on Tuesday confirmed that it totally fueled its Starship launch system throughout a important check on Monday and is now making ready to take the subsequent step towards launch.
The corporate shared photographs and video of its totally fueled Starship higher stage and Tremendous Heavy first stage in South Texas. The shiny, chrome steel autos appeared frosty as they have been loaded with super-cold liquid oxygen and methane propellants.
Throughout this “wet-dress rehearsal” check, SpaceX mentioned it loaded greater than 10 million kilos (about 460,000 kg) of propellant onboard the automobile, which, when totally stacked, stands 120 meters tall. Primarily then, over the course of a little bit greater than an hour, the corporate crammed a thin, 30-story skyscraper with flamable liquid propellants—and nothing blew up.
Notably, SpaceX accomplished this vital fueling check on its first try with Starship and Tremendous Heavy in a stacked configuration, testing each the rocket in addition to the launch tower and myriad floor methods required to pump all of those pressurized cryogenic fluids.
Now, SpaceX mentioned, the corporate’s engineers and technicians will take away the Starship automobile from atop the primary stage and set it apart. It will allow the corporate to conduct a static hearth check of all 33 Raptor 2 rocket engines presently connected to the primary stage. That is the ultimate main technical check earlier than a launch try can happen.
This firing will check a number of key methods, together with engine ignition and the plumbing contained in the rocket to hold all that gasoline to all these engines concurrently. It’s potential that this check may happen inside the subsequent week or 10 days, however that timeline seemingly is dependent upon a whole lot of work being carried out on schedule.
And if that check goes properly? SpaceX will share the info from this and different checks with the Federal Aviation Administration, which is accountable for licensing the experimental launch from SpaceX’s services in South Texas. As well as, SpaceX additionally has work to do to arrange its floor methods in South Texas for the launch try.
However, it’s clear that SpaceX is making glorious progress towards the much-anticipated liftoff of Starship, which would be the heaviest, tallest, most succesful, and strongest rocket to ever take off from Earth.