Elon Musk says the spacecraft’s orbital stack will be ready to fly in a few weeks.
SpaceX founder Elon Musk said Saturday that the Starship rocket’s first orbital stack should be ready to fly in the next few weeks, taking the unorthodox billionaire one step closer to his dream of orbital and then interplanetary travel.
In May, SpaceX successfully landed its prototype Starship, SN15, a reusable heavy-lift launch vehicle that could eventually carry astronauts and large payloads to the Moon and Mars.
The landing came after four prototype landing attempts ended in explosions.
“Starship’s first orbital stack should be ready to fly in a few weeks, pending regulatory approval only,” Musk tweeted. Starship’s first orbital stack should be ready to fly in a few weeks, pending only regulatory approval.
First orbital stack of Starship should be ready for flight in a few weeks, pending only regulatory approval
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 15, 2021
The complete Starship rocket, SpaceX’s next-generation launch vehicle, stands 120 m (394 ft) tall when paired with its super-heavy first-stage booster.
It is at the center of the Tesla CEO’s ambitions to make human space travel more affordable and routine.
An orbital Starship flight is planned for the end of the year, and Musk has said he intends to fly Japanese billionaire businessman Yusaku Maezawa around the moon in Starship in 2023.