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Dial H For Hero

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Fri Jul 31, 2020, 12:14 PM Jul 2020

Starship SN5 completes engine test - short, low-altitude flight test to follow 'soon' says Elon Musk


The sixth full-scale testing prototype of SpaceX's Starship has successfully completed a key static fire test of its Raptor engines, according to SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk . The so-called "SN5" Starship prototype is now ready to move on to a 150m (nearly 500 feet) short-duration flight test, which would mark the furthest yet that one of these testing spacecraft has made it through SpaceX's planned development program.

SpaceX has been building and testing Starship prototypes (which are designated by the "SN" followed by their number in sequence) since last year, after the company first built a sub-scale demonstrator that was made up of basically just the base of a Starship with a single Raptor engine mounted to demonstrate low-altitude flight and landing capabilities.

Since then, SpaceX has been building full-scale demonstration prototypes to perform more test flights, initially seeking to go immediately into high-altitude testing. These were known as Mk1 and Mk2, and Mk1 was destroyed during pressure tank testing, while Mk2 was scrapped with the company turning its focus to Mk3 (renamed SN1, starting the new naming convention for the series). The prototypes that have been developed since have been built and tested rapidly, with SN3 and SN4 both suffering catastrophic failures during the testing process.

SpaceX has successfully test-fired the SN5 prototype, however, as of today, and will now move on to the first low-altitude "hop" flight of full-scale prototype test vehicle.


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Starship SN5 completes engine test - short, low-altitude flight test to follow 'soon' says Elon Musk (Original Post) Dial H For Hero Jul 2020 OP
Local news coverage, including a photo. TexasTowelie Jul 2020 #1
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