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SpaceX Tests SN10 Starship Prototype for Second Time

SpaceX Tests SN10 Starship Prototype for Second Time
SpaceX Tests SN10 Starship Prototype for Second Time

SpaceX has fired up its newest Starship prototype for the second time, continuing the vehicle's test-flight prep.
Starship SN10 ignited its three Raptor engines for a few seconds on Feb. 25 at 5:57 p.m. EST (2257 GMT) in a "static fire" trial at SpaceX's South Texas site, near Boca Chica Village on the state's Gulf of Mexico Coast, reported.
SN10's first static fire, which occurred on Feb. 23, apparently revealed an issue with one of the vehicle's Raptors. SpaceX quickly swapped out the engine and got SN10 ready for another static fire, a common preflight checkout for the company's rockets.
If all went well on Feb. 25, SN10 ("Serial No. 10") could get off the ground very soon, perhaps in the next few days. The vehicle will fly about 6.2 miles (10 kilometers) into the South Texas skies, a high-altitude jaunt similar to the ones flown by the three-engine SN8 and SN9 prototypes on Dec. 9 and Feb. 2, respectively.
Those two flights went well until the very end. Both SN8 and SN9 hit their targeted landing zones but did not survive the touchdown, exploding in massive fireballs.
SpaceX is developing Starship to get people and cargo to the moon, Mars and beyond. The system consists of two fully reusable elements: a 165-foot-tall (50 meters) spacecraft called Starship and a huge rocket known as Super Heavy.
“The final Starship will have six Raptors, and Super Heavy will be powered by about 30 of the engines,” SpaceX Founder and CEO Elon Musk has said.
The final, operational Starship could be flying soon, if all goes according to plan. 
SpaceX hopes to launch a prototype into orbit sometime this year, and Musk recently said he thinks the system will be flying people regularly by 2023. 

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