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Starship update: static fire tests at Starbase, launch tower near completion at LC-39A, Florida, more


SpaceX conducted static fire tests on both the Starship 24 (SN24) and the Super Heavy Booster 7 prototypes at Starbase last week. Starship 24 is currently the intended version to go for the 1st orbital flight test since SpaceX retired SN20 back in March.

On the other hand in Florida, SpaceX is about to complete the erection of the Starship launch integration tower (Mechazilla) at the Cape Canaveral Space Force Station Launch Complex 39A.

SpaceX has been using LC-39A for Falcon 9 flights for a long time now and the same launch area will be used for Starship spaceflights in the future.

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SpaceX rolled the topmost final segment of the Starship launch integration tower to LC-39A yesterday. The next steps to complete the tower will be the installation of the quick-disconnect arm and the Chopsticks.

The completion of the Starship launch integration tower in Florida might take a few weeks to a few months depending on the pace of work SpaceX is able to continue at this location. With the experience of erecting and integrating Mechazilla towers at Starbase previously, SpaceX should be able to smoothly carry out the same operations here in Florida.

Another angle of the topmost

Related: Watch Mechazilla Chopsticks lift Starship Super Heavy Booster 7 with 33 Raptor engines onto the launch mount

Back at Starbase, SpaceX performed a static fire test on Starship 24 last week on Sep 08 with all of its 6 engines installed. According to SpaceX, the test was completed successfully.

But this time, the grass around the launch pad area caught fire due to the Starship 24 static fire test. Local observers believe that plastic and other material parts ejecting from the launch pad during the static fire test are the sources of the burning grass in the surrounding area. Let’s watch what happened in the following video:

24-hour (Sep 10 -11, 2022) timelapse compilation video feed from different areas of Starbase (launch pad, Mechazilla, SpaceX employees working on different projects, and long-shot images of Starbase).

Before the Starship 24 static fire test, SpaceX conducted a spin prime test on the Super Heavy Booster 7 (B7). Spin prime or spin-up tests are conducted on rocket engines by fueling them with cold propellant (LOX in the case of Starship). The cold fuel is pumped inside the engines and the turbine spins at normal operating speeds without igniting the engines.

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Video: Starship 24 static fire and Super Heavy Booster 7 spin prime tests and other updates from Starbase, Boca Chica, Texas.



By Iqtidar Ali

Iqtidar has been writing about Tesla, Elon Musk, and EVs for more than 3 years on, many of his articles have been republished on CleanTechnica and InsideEVs, maintains a healthy relationship with the Tesla community across the Social Media sphere. You can reach him on Twitter @IqtidarAlii

One reply on “Starship update: static fire tests at Starbase, launch tower near completion at LC-39A, Florida, more”

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