During a crucial test on Monday, SpaceX verified on Tuesday that it completely fuelled its Starship launch system. The company is now getting ready to go through with the launch.
The corporation published pictures and a video of its Super Heavy first stage and fully fuelled Starship upper stage in South Texas. As they were filled with very chilly liquid oxygen and methane propellants, the gleaming stainless steel vehicles took on a frosted appearance.
SpaceX claimed to have loaded more than 10 million pounds (approximately 4.6 million kg) of fuel onto the vehicle, which stands 120 meters tall when completely packed, during this “wet-dress rehearsal” test. In other words, for over an hour, the business loaded a lean, 30-story building with flammable liquid fuels—and nothing blew up.
SpaceX successfully completed this crucial fueling test on its first try while stacking Starship and Super Heavy. This test evaluated the rocket, the launch tower, and the ground systems necessary to pump these pressurized cryogenic fluids.
The Starship spacecraft will now be taken off the top of the first stage and placed away, according to SpaceX. This will allow the business to test all 33 Raptor 2 rocket engines mounted to the first stage using static fire. This is the last significant technical test that must be completed before a launch attempt.
This fire will put numerous crucial components to the test, including simultaneous fuel delivery to all of the engines and engine ignition. This test may take place in the next seven or ten days, although that timeframe probably relies on a lot of work being completed on schedule.
And if the test is successful? The Federal Aviation Administration, which is in charge of approving the experimental launch from SpaceX’s facility in South Texas, will get data from this test and others from SpaceX. Additionally, SpaceX has been working to have its South Texas ground systems ready for the launch attempt.
The much-anticipated launch of Starship, which will be the largest, tallest, most capable, and most powerful rocket ever to leave Earth, is still coming along quite well for SpaceX.