SpaceX backup Starship reaches full height after nosecone installation

SpaceX has installed another Starship’s nosecone, all but completing the second full-size prototype a matter of days before the first fully-assembled Starship’s risky launch debut. Over the last two months, SpaceX has effectively put Starship number 8 (SN8) through an almost nonstop series of tests, completing at least four separate cryogenic proof tests, four Raptor […]

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SpaceX ‘go’ for 50,000-foot Starship launch debut after static fire, Elon Musk says

CEO Elon Musk says that SpaceX’s first fully-assembled Starship prototype is on track for its 15-kilometer (~50,000 ft) launch debut after completing a second three-engine static fire test on Tuesday. Starship serial number 8’s (SN8) three Raptor engines ignited for a few seconds around 5:30 pm CST (UTC-6) on Tuesday, November 24th, less than four […]

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A SpaceX rocket just aced its seventh launch and landing for the first time

For the first time ever, a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket booster has successfully completed seven orbital-class launches and landings, leaving the company as few as three flights away from achieving its longstanding reusability goal. Ending two days of “mission assurance” and weather-related delays, Falcon 9 booster B1049.6, a new expendable upper stage (S2), two flight-proven […]

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SpaceX to attempt same-day Starship static fire, Starlink launch [livestream]

SpaceX is in the process of attempting static-fire the first fully-assembled Starship prototype as few as four hours before a Falcon 9 rocket’s schedule Starlink launch. After SpaceX decided to scrub a November 22nd launch attempt for vague “additional mission assurance” and preempted a November 23rd backup to wait for better Atlantic Ocean recovery weather, […]

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SpaceX’s most important Falcon 9 booster yet returns to port with a lean

On November 19th, what is likely SpaceX’s most important Falcon 9 booster yet returned to Port Canaveral with a surprise – perhaps the most dramatic lean ever observed on one of the recovered rockets. Tilted a solid 10+ degrees from vertical, the lean was immediately visible as soon as the top of the rocket crest […]

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SpaceX set for 14th Starlink mission of 2020 after sailing past annual launch record

SpaceX has static fired a record-breaking Falcon 9 booster and says it’s ready to launch its 14th Starlink mission this year just a day and a half after sailing past the company’s previous annual launch record. Set in 2018, SpaceX’s previous annual launch record stood at 21 missions – 20 Falcon 9s and one Falcon […]

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SpaceX aces rare Falcon 9 land landing, first California launch in a year and a half

A Falcon 9 rocket has aced a rare ‘land’ landing as part of SpaceX’s first California launch in almost a year and a half and what a company manager deemed “the start of many exciting things to come”. Carrying the ~1200 kg (~2600 lb) Sentinel 6A oceanography and Earth observation satellite, a brand new Falcon […]

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SpaceX’s NASA Falcon Heavy launch debut a step closer as interplanetary payload powers up

Maxar Technologies says it’s powered on NASA’s Psyche spacecraft for the first time, pushing the asteroid explorer a step closer to the space agency’s SpaceX Falcon Heavy launch debut. Despite the many challenges and disruptions posed by the global coronavirus pandemic, Psyche principal investigator Lindy Elkins-Tanton recently noted that the mission to the spacecraft’s namesake […]

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SpaceX’s plans for a reusable Dragon spacecraft fleet detailed by Gwynne Shotwell

President and COO Gwynne Shotwell says that SpaceX is simultaneously building a fleet of reusable, orbital Dragon spacecraft designed to support a range of NASA and commercial astronaut and cargo launches over the next 5-10 years. Speaking shortly after SpaceX’s successful November 15th operational astronaut launch debut, also known as Crew-1, Shotwell revealed that the […]

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SpaceX’s Elon Musk hints at “notable” Starship changes, explains static fire anomaly

CEO Elon Musk has offered an explanation for SpaceX’s recent Starship static fire anomaly and says that an overview of the next-generation rocket development program will be delayed to account for some “notable” design changes. Over the last several months, Musk has promised to do one of his (thus far) usual annual Starship updates, either […]

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