The launch of Starship, the SpaceX ship that aims to inaugurate an era of interplanetary travel, is already imminent. After almost two years of careful evaluation, the ambitious project, led by billionaire Elon Musk, has finally obtained authorization from the US government to carry out its first orbital flight.
If it takes off successfully, the Starship/Super Heavy —official name of the ship and the launch system— will become the most powerful space vehicle in history, with a thrust force almost twice that of NASA’s Space Launch System rocket.
In the coming years, Musk intends to use Starship to take humanity back to the Moon and, later, to travel for the first time to the surface of Mars, the red planet.
When will the launch of the Starship be?
According to the official SpaceX page, the launch of the Starship ship is scheduled for this monday april 17. If a climatic or technical mishap occurs on that date, the launch of the spacecraft could be postponed between April 18 and 22, indicates Space News.
Takeoff will take place from the Starbase platform (in Boca Chica, Texas), where the gigantic 120-meter-high transportation system is already assembled.
What time will Starship take off?
The countdown to the launch of Starship will begin at 12:00 UTC (7:00 am in Peru time). The launch window will be 150 minutes. The event will be broadcast live on official SpaceX channels.
About three minutes after takeoff, the Super Heavy’s 33 engines (first stage) will shut down and, almost immediately, the Starship (second stage) will detach. The spacecraft will then fire its engines to enter orbit and make a partial orbit around Earth.
Although the Starship and the Super Heavy have been designed to be completely reusable (the vehicles can return to Earth with a vertical descent), in this first test, neither block will recover after landing.