Musk’s company plans to carry out the first orbital launch test of its Starship spacecraft soon, possibly as soon as September.
On May 5, SpaceX successfully tested a prototype Starship, and the vehicle, the SN15, flew at an altitude of 10 kilometers before completing a successful landing.
The plan for the first orbital test flight calls for Starship SN20 or Ship20, as it’s now known, to leave the atmosphere and re-enter its first orbital attempt with a soft water landing off the coast of the Hawaiian island of Kauai, in the Pacific Ocean. Meanwhile, the Starship Super Heavy rocket will try to land in the Gulf of Mexico, off the coast of Boca Chica Beach. The flight is expected to last around 90 minutes.
Starship will be completely reusable, which would significantly reduce their cost from their current Falcon 9 configuration. The company intends to transport cargo and people to the Moon, Mars, and also continue the SpaceX Starlink missions with Starship. Each ship will be capable of carrying loads of more than 100 tons and 100 passengers at a time.