SpaceX Perform First Fiery Hop Test of Starship Prototype

The Raptor engine undergoing test-firings at SpaceX’s Rocket Development and Test Facility near McGregor Texas. Credit SpaceX

The Raptor engine undergoing test-firings at SpaceX’s Rocket Development and Test Facility near McGregor Texas. Credit SpaceX

Eventually, SpaceX will pair Starship with a booster stage called Super Heavy to be able to place large payloads into orbit. These "hoppers" have been often used by SpaceX to test rockets in the past.

(Web Desk) - Space X tested their new spacecraft "Starship Hopper" prototype today at the Texas launch site which lasted less than a minute.

The prototype being tested is suborbital, but SpaceX is building an orbital version at Boca Chica.

U.S. manufacturer of advanced rockets and spacecrafts, SpaceX has test-fired the onboard engine Raptor of its next-generation spacecraft the Starship's hopper version for the first time. We do not need it.

Starhopper was built at SpaceX's Boca Chica launch facility, near Brownsville, Texas, and the company's fans have been watching avidly from afar as ground crews installed the first Raptor engine and tested out the propulsion system's plumbing. He posted a two-second video after the second test April 6, showing the engine igniting and the vehicle, largely obscured by the plume from the engine, appearing to rise off the pad slight.

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Prior to Starship's maiden voyage to space in a few years, the company plans to first carry out several hover flights with the Starhopper.

Starhopper marked the first time it ignited its engine, which will be most possibly followed by short hop flights in upcoming months.

SpaceX plans to attach three Raptors to the Starhopper so that it could do higher hops.

Starhopper was also tethered, or connected to ground equipment, for the duration of the test.

SpaceX distributed flyers to locals before the test warning that special checkpoints would be set up during the test to maintain a safety perimeter. "Orbital version is taller, has thicker skins (won't wrinkle) and a smoothly curving nose section", Musk said in January.

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