SpaceX has accomplished the first-ever wet dress rehearsal of its stacked Super Heavy rocket and Starship spacecraft.
The exercise, which involves fueling SpaceX’s next-generation rocket and dealing through pre-launch procedures, is a crucial step toward the vehicle’s first orbital test flight, which could happen in February or March.
The rehearsal took place at SpaceX’s Starbase facility in Boca Chica, Texas, on Monday. SpaceX announced the completion of the test in a tweet, however it omitted to say whether it had been successful.
“Starship accomplished its first full flight-like wet dress rehearsal at Starbase today,” it said. “This was the primary time an integrated Ship and Booster were fully loaded with greater than 10 million kilos of propellant.”
Starship accomplished its first full flight-like wet dress rehearsal at Starbase today. This was the primary time an integrated Ship and Booster were fully loaded with greater than 10 million kilos of propellant pic.twitter.com/btprGNGZ1G
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) January 24, 2023
If the rehearsal went in keeping with plan, Starship shall be faraway from the highest of the Super Heavy rocket in preparation for a static fire test where the first-stage booster is tethered to the bottom before having its 33 Raptor 2 engines fired to make sure they’re behaving as expected.
A successful engine test would then see the Starship placed back atop the rocket for the highly anticipated orbital test flight that may earn the space vehicle a spot within the record books as probably the most powerful ever to fly.
NASA is as keen as anyone for the test flight to happen — and be successful — because it wants to make use of a modified version of the Starship spacecraft to land the primary woman and first person of color on the lunar surface as a part of the Artemis III mission. The voyage is currently slated for 2025, though that date could slip.
Looking further ahead, the space agency could also use the Super Heavy and Starship for the primary crewed mission to Mars, an ambitious endeavor that would happen within the 2030s.
SpaceX also wants to make use of its recent rocket and spacecraft for the primary all-civilian moon mission, which is able to see Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa travel with eight others to our nearest celestial neighbor and perform a flyby of the lunar surface before returning home. The six-day dearMoon mission was originally planned for this yr, but with the Super Heavy still to finish its first orbital flight, the mission looks certain to be delayed.
Today’s tech news, curated and condensed to your inbox
Check your inbox!
Please provide a sound email address to proceed.
This email address is currently on file. In the event you are usually not receiving newsletters, please check your spam folder.
Sorry, an error occurred during subscription. Please try again later.