Impressive footage of SpaceX’s Starship prototype SN5. It made a successful 150 meter high “hop” at their facility in Boca Chica, Texas yesterday:
Musk says they will do several “hops” like this before adding aerodynamic surfaces and making higher flights. They already have another prototype completed (SN6) and many of the components made for SN8.
They’re gonna be mass-producing Starships before we know it.
There are 4 or 5 YouTube channels I follow that give constant reports on the progress down on Boca Chica. They are simultaneously building spacecraft, building a mass-production facility for these spacecraft, building a launch facility for these spacecraft, and flying these spacecraft.
While I probably will never go into space, my descendants will be able to and that makes me very happy. To quote Robert A. Heinlein, "The earth is too fragile a basket for the human race to put all its eggs into"
The top of that flying grain silo has a couple of rolls of the stainless steel used to make the ship strapped on as weight. Can’t balance a cylinder on the tip of a gimbaled rocket engine without mass at the tip. And that is a single raptor engine. It wasn’t even mounted in the center. The big deal is not the rocket, it’s the engine. That is one hell of a machine, and will be the first full flow engine to see space. The theory has been around for decades, but the metallurgy wasn’t there. The soviets had working models, but they never flew them, as far as I’m aware, because they weren’t reliable. It is so hard to build one that US intelligence believed that reports that the soviets had one were dismissed as propaganda. We didn’t believe it until after the USSR collapsed. It really is an accomplishment worthy of praise, especially with the chamber pressures they’re getting.