Elon Musk says SpaceX has assembled Starship test rocket with shiny, retro look - GeekWire
Geekwire.com - Fri 11 Jan 11:50 GMT

Elon Musk says SpaceX has assembled Starship test rocket with shiny, retro look - GeekWire

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk says that assembly of the first Starship short-hop test rocket is complete.

  For weeks, photographers have been snapping pictures of a retro-looking, shiny stainless-steel rocket that’s been taking shape at SpaceX’s launch site in South Texas — and tonight, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk declared that assembly of the first Starship short-hop test rocket is complete.

  Musk tweeted a picture of what looks to be a roughly 120-foot-tall “Starship Hopper,” composed of three sections that were put together at SpaceX’s Boca Chica facility.

  Musk says the refuelable Starship, when paired with a huge rocket booster known as the Super Heavy, could be used for transcontinental point-to-point trips on Earth, satellite constellation deployment, voyages around the moon and to the lunar surface, and journeys to Mars and back.

  The craft that has been taking shape in Texas is meant to fly short hops to practice launches and landings, just as SpaceX’s Grasshopper rocket platform and its successor, the F9R Dev, were used as test beds for Falcon 9 booster landings in the 2012-2014 time frame.

  “Engines currently on Starship hopper are a blend of Raptor development and operational parts,” Musk explained last weekend.