SpaceX targets April 20 for its next attempt to launch Starship from Texas

After a last minute scrub, SpaceX now plans to attempt the Starship launch on Thursday, the company said on Tuesday

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After a last minute scrub, SpaceX now plans to attempt the Starship launch on Thursday, the company said on Tuesday.

"SpaceX is targeting as soon as Thursday, April 20 for the first flight test of a fully integrated Starship and Super Heavy rocket from Starbase in Texas," the company updated on its website.

"The 62 minute launch window opens at 8:28 a.m. CT (6:58a-pm IST) and closes at 9:30 a.m. CT (8:00a-pm IST)," it added.

The first launch attempt on Monday was called off at the last minute due to an issue with the pressurisation system on Starship's first stage, a huge booster called Super Heavy.

"A pressurant valve appears to be frozen, so unless it starts operating soon, no launch today," CEO Elon Musk reported in a tweet on Monday.

During the next attempt on Thursday, the Super Heavy booster will make a hard splashdown in the Gulf of Mexico about eight minutes after liftoff, reported.

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Starship's upper-stage spacecraft will make a partial lap around Earth, coming down in the Pacific Ocean near Hawaii around 90 minutes after launch, the report said.

"With a test such as this, success is measured by how much we can learn, which will inform and improve the probability of success in the future as SpaceX rapidly advances development of Starship," the company said.

Meanwhile, Musk is keeping the expectations low.

"I guess I'd like to just set expectations low," Musk said during a Twitter "Spaces" event for his subscribers on Sunday evening.

"If we get far enough away from the launch pad before something goes wrong, then I think I would consider that to be a success. Just don't blow up the pad.

"There's a good chance that it gets postponed since we're going to be pretty careful about this launch," he added.

Musk had previously said that there is only a 50 per cent chance that the first-ever orbital mission of SpaceX's huge Starship vehicle will be a success. But he also stressed that SpaceX is building multiple Starship vehicles at the South Texas site.

These will be launched in relatively quick succession over the coming months, and there's about an 80 per cent chance one of them will reach orbit this year.

SpaceX aims to use Starship as a fully reusable transportation system to carry both crew and cargo to Earth orbit, help humanity return to the Moon, and travel to Mars and beyond.



(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Apr 18 2023 | 2:03 PM IST

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