The SN10 and SN9 are the latest versions of SpaceX and Elon Musk’s Starship prototypes, which the company has been developing in its factory in Boca Chica, Texas.Musk had promisedIt will be able to make revolutionary point-to-point travel on a global scale and to the moon, Mars and beyond.
In the past few years, the starship prototype has evolved from a brief low-altitude “jump” to a high-altitude flight demonstration. The previous two serial numbers, SN8 and SN9, have already flown to an altitude comparable to that of commercial jet aircraft during cruise, but then entered an explosive hard landing.
Musk had warned before the test that he hoped that such “rapid unplanned disassembly” events would become part of the development process.
After the SN8 plane flew and crashed in December, the follow-up flight of SN9 suffered a series of delays throughout January. According to reports, the launch of SN8 did not have all the necessary approvals from the Federal Aviation Administration, and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) then spent some time granting a launch license for SN9 to launch a man-to-man competition.
In the end, FAA was satisfied with the safety precautions of the test flight, and SN9 finally flew on February 2. After returning to Earth in the afternoon, the FAA announced that it would investigate the “unfortunate” landing.
On February 19, an FAA spokesperson stated via e-mail that the agency had concluded its investigation into the landing accident and “cleared the way for the SN10 test flight, and waited for FAA’s approval to renew the license.”
“The SN9 vehicle failed within the scope of FAA safety analysis. Its unsuccessful landing and explosion did not endanger the public or property. All debris was contained in the designated hazardous area. FAA approved the final accident report, including possible causes and corrective measures .”
As of Monday morning, Christian Davenport of The Washington Post reported that the Federal Aviation Administration had granted a launch permit, paving the way for the launch of SN10 after static test fire.
The test was conducted on Tuesday, and SpaceX was not satisfied with the results. One Raptor engine of the SN10 was swapped out, and the test firepower of the other was completed on Thursday. The launch time on Friday has been ruled out. The next opportunity is now on Monday, March 1, with the alternate window on Tuesday and Wednesday.
After SN10 is ready to take off, please check the update and live broadcast here.
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