Elon Musk, the SpaceX CEO announced that Starship spacecraft to make it to orbit in six months.
“This is going to sound totally nuts, but I think we want to try to reach orbit in less than six months. Provided the rate of design improvement and manufacturing improvement continues to be exponential, I think that is accurate to within a few months,” Musk said.
During the presentation at SpaceX’s testing facility near Boca Chica, Texas, just north of the US-Mexico border, Musk also said that he expected the Starship prototype towering behind him to do controlled ‘hops’ in a few months up to an altitude of 65,000 feet. Once that milestone is reached, Musk indicated the next flight goal would be achieving orbit.
A rendering of Starship displayed at the presentation indicated that the ship will have a length of 50 meters (about 164 feet) and a diameter of nine meters (about 30 feet), and should eventually be able to lift a payload of 150 tons. The Starship will be launched into space by a massive rocket called the Super Heavy. The Super Heavy will also be nine meters in diameter, with a length of 68 meters (223 feet.)
The Super Heavy will be able to contain up to 37 Raptor engines, according to Musk. But, he added, “I’m not sure we’ll go that high.” Musk said the number of engines could vary depending on the mission, and indicated that the minimum number of engines for the booster could be about 24.
Source : Various