Elon Musk is proposing to make some changes to SpaceX’s Starship Hopper rocket before it is launched to Mars. The CEO of SpaceX and Tesla currently posted a photo of the Starship Hopper test-flight rocket. Many thought it was just a interpreting of the rocket at first, but Musk explained that the stainless steel construction was certainly real. Later, Musk may have also implied at some future plans for the space rocket on Twitter. The silver-looking rocket has very few extra features or frills, aside from a simple American flag on the hull. Mr. Musk was keen to stress that the image wasn’t a rendering because of its resemblance to an artist’s impression which he released before.
The current construction of the Starship Hopper will only complete sub-orbital flights, or “hops”, racing high into the atmosphere before landing back on Earth. The Starship design positively reminds you of the retro shape that we have seen in old sci-fi movies and cartoons. In core, it is certainly a shape that we can relate to, and look delightful at it. Most of that pictorial impact comes from the stainless steel body that it sports. Some of the fans showed their anxieties on why SpaceX chose stainless steel instead of more lightweight substances like carbon fiber or aluminum or the more expensive titanium. This specific model will be used to test short launches and landings. Earlier this month, the billionaire said SpaceX was targeting to carry out test flights within four weeks, but admitted it could be as long as eight weeks when unforeseen issues are factored in.
Responding to questions from space enthusiasts, Mr. Musk said that the first orbital prototype should be ready by June. SpaceX is only in the first phase so far. Hopper test flights will propel the rocket several miles into the sky before it reverts to a controlled descent and touches down. An orbital prototype, which will get a major advantage from the huge Super Heavy rocket boosters, should be finished in June. The final Starship and Super Heavy boosters, both reusable, will be 338 feet of metal. For some perspective, that is about the height of a 31-story skyscraper. Musk also tweeted that vertical flight tests will be similar to those the Falcon Grasshopper protos went through. The second Grasshopper was airborne for 79 seconds and made it to 2,441 feet on its final test flight. While Starship Hopper is still on terra firma, anyone hanging out at Boca Chica Beach will get this Instagrammable view.
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