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First SpaceX Starship Hopper tests this week?

Capitalism in space: According to this news story on Sunday, SpaceX could attempt its first Starship Hopper tests this week.

A sheriff hand-delivered road closure notices to residents on Friday, according to a local resident. The document warned locals that SpaceX will “conduct testing” as soon as Monday, March 18.

The article also cites a flurry of tweets about the hopper that Elon Musk made on Sunday. Unfortunately, Musk’s tweets do not say anything about tests this week.

Regardless, it appears that SpaceX might actually be close to beating the schedule it announced for these tests back in November, when Musk said they were aiming for tests in June. If so, this would be a remarkable achievement, one that is almost unheard of in the aerospace launch industry.

Conscious Choice cover

Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!

 

From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

 
Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.

 

“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.

 

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Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95; Shipping cost for either: $5.00). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.

2 comments

  • geoffc

    The news out of the tweets was really good though.

    First hop (probably barely lifting) is going to be with the single Raptor they installed over the weekend. (If they test, 2-5 days after installing the engine, that is a VERY good sign. NASA would need 6 months to test before willing to fire it up).

    The two cylinders under construction at the original site (Hopper was trucked to a launch area, freeing up construction space) are for the next Hopper build, called Suborbital (But since everything that gets off the ground is suborbital, what does that mean?).

    And they will launch and build from Boca Chica and the Cape.

    And details on heat shielding.

  • Dick Eagleson

    Actually, the additional barrel sections now under construction at Boca Chica are not for a second StarHopper. From a Musk tweet two days ago:

    “We decided to skip building a new nosecone for Hopper. Don’t need it. What you see being built is the orbital Starship vehicle.”

    In late 2018 Musk said he expected the first Starship to complete construction by mid-year. Looks as though that project may be ahead of schedule.

    Imagine all the heads that would explode if Musk – gasp! – finished something ahead of schedule!

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