In September 2019 Elon Musk said he hoped SpaceX would be able to perform an orbital test of its Starship vehicle within six months, and while that didn’t happen the company is apparently ready to perform a high-altitude flight test. In a tweet, the exec said that the latest prototype, dubbed SN8, had undergone a successful static fire, and that a flight test to an altitude of about 15 km could happen as soon as next week.
Starship SN8 Static Fire!— Chris B - NSF (@NASASpaceflight) November 24, 2020
Overview Article for this test:https://t.co/E3v5cOyEAt
Mary (@BocaChicaGal) livestreaming with the NSF Crew.
The folks at NASASpaceflight live streamed video of the triple Raptor engine firing, and posted a clip of the event on Twitter. Based on notices to locals in the area, they report that November 30th is a likely date for the test, so keep an eye out — you may see that “flying water tower” go higher than ever before.
Good Starship SN8 static fire! Aiming for first 15km / ~50k ft altitude flight next week. Goals are to test 3 engine ascent, body flaps, transition from main to header tanks & landing flip.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 24, 2020