SpaceX speeds up Starship SN15 with “hundreds” of upgrades | Elon Musk wants to create his own city

SpaceX speeds up Starship SN15 with “hundreds” of upgrades | Elon Musk wants to create his own city

As we know, SpaceX is planning to send humans to Moon and Mars in the future. To fulfill their goal SpaceX is developing their ultimate weapon, starship. Previously we witness SN11’s high altitude test flight. People were eagerly waiting to see SN11 successfully landing on the launch pad. 

However, a mid-air explosion literally destroyed the vehicle before it could go for a landing attempt. Although a test failure did not slow down SpaceX,   rather they accelerated work on the upcoming starship line-up with some major improvements. 

Last year in November, Musk first talked about “major [Starship] upgrades” with starship prototype SN15.  After the SN15 flight test, Musk again said in a tweet that SpaceX would roll out SN15 with “hundreds” of upgrades. It clearly shows that SpaceX has some big plans regarding the SN15 starship prototype. 

SpaceX speeds up Starship SN15

Musk also talked about the SN20 line-up. “Next major technology rev is at SN20.   Those ships will be orbit-capable with a heat shield & stage separation system. Ascent success probability is high,” he twitted. “However, SN20+ vehicles   will probably need many flight attempts to survive Mach 25 entry heating & land intact.” 

Musk previously hinted that SN15 would be on the launch pad “in a few days.” A   local photographer named Mary a.k.a BocaChicaGal recently posted a picture of SN15’s tank section   saying that “Starship SN15 is headed for the high bay.” 

It was March 31, a day after SN11 exploded during the test, SpaceX moved starship SN15’s tank section (the bottom two-thirds of the rocket) from  Boca Chica’s “mid-bay” assembly building. Now SpaceX installed the nosecone to the starship.   “Starship SN15’s nosecone is being stacked in the high bay” Mary twitted with a photo of the nosecone. 

SpaceX speeds up Starship SN15_1

A few more days will take to install the rocket on a transporter and roll it to the launch pad. Perhaps by the end of the next week, we might see SN15 standing in the launchpad. Meanwhile, SpaceX’s super heavy booster is getting close to its flight. Some people might wonder why there is no super heavy news as SpaceX giving all of its effort to the starship development.   

However, thanks to SpaceX CEO, now we have some updates regarding the super-heavy booster. SpaceX has already completed super-heavy booster number 1 or BN1 at its south Texas facility and now working on a new design, BN2. Musk said, “BN1 is a manufacturing pathfinder, so will be scrapped. 

We learned a lot, but have already changed the design to BN2.” “Goal is to get BN2 with engines on the orbital pad before the end of April. It might even be orbit-capable if we are lucky,”   Musk added.  

The next segment of our news regarding Starbase. 

SpaceX CEO wants people to move to “Starbase” in south Texas. SpaceX’s Texas Starbase has the potential to grow in the future. Also creating a city would provide several benefits to SpaceX.   

Theoretically, a growing city will attract more people. This will help a private spaceflight company like SpaceX because people in need of a job will come to join the company.   This is why Musk recently said on Twitter that people should move to Starbase. “Please consider moving to Starbase or greater Brownsville/South Padre area in Texas & encourage   friends to do so!” Musk stated on Tuesday. 

Also Read: SpaceX Marks First Launch Anniversary With Starlink Mission | SpaceX Starship & Falcon Heavy Update

This could be a useful opportunity for new residents to be a part of SpaceX’s recruitment push. Musk said that “SpaceX’s hiring needs for engineers,   technicians, builders & essential support personnel of all kinds are growing rapidly.”   It will create an environment that seeks development. 

Musk believes that “Starbase will grow by several thousand people over the next year or two.” This clearly shows SpaceX wants to expand its workforce and Texas could be a suitable place to do so. Cameron country is home to the SpaceX site.   

As of March, SpaceX owns 110 parcels (through an affiliated LLC) in Cameron country.   Musk is donating a total of $30M for both prospective residents and local officials. Musk tweeted “Am   donating $20M to Cameron Country schools $10M to City of Brownsville for downtown revitalization.” 

When one talked about making Starbase and its surroundings run on 100% renewable energy,  Musk replied, “We’re not super far, as Magic Valley Utility can give us almost all wind-power,   which will be used for LOX (78% of propellant mass)/N2/argon distillation, We’re also aiming   to increase solar power from 1MW to 10MW, paired with Tesla Megapacks, for continuous power.” 

A good example of company towns, chocolate-centric Hershey, Park. lies in the late 19th and early   20th centuries. In Nevada, the governor allows tech companies to create their own local governments. 

Jared Mondschein, an associate physical scientist at Rand Corp. stated, “This initiative in Nevada  to me reads like a new way of doing business, a new way of trying to avoid some of the common  challenges that some of these companies have been running into the last couple of years.”   Mondschein has studied the digital transformation of cities. “


The wild card in all these conversations is always: How will people who live there react?” he added. “For too long our state has watched as many of our neighbors reap the benefits advanced technology industries bring,” Blockchains Chief Executive Jeffrey Berns wrote in an op-ed in the Reno Gazette-Journal. “Now is Nevada’s time to take a   leading role in developing the technology solutions the entire world will use.” SpaceX’s plans to form a city are still in the early stages. 

Encouraging people to move to Texas (Boca Chica area) could help Musk to create a standalone SpaceX base. The company already brought most of the three dozen homes to Boca Chica and continues doing so. 

Falcon 9 debris lands in Washington. 

Last week a pressure vessel of SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket clashes on a man’s farm in Washington  State. According to the information, falcon 9’s debris made a “4-inch dent in the soil.” A few days ago, falcon 9’s debris (space junk) seen streaking across the night sky,  which more looked like a meteor shower. Local officials said the reason for this incident is that falcon 9’s second stage caught up in an unusual spot in the atmosphere during re-entry.   

As a result, the black Composite-Overwrapped Pressure Vessel, or COPV, remains from falcon   9’s second stage landed on private property in southwestern Grant Country,   causing an impact on the ground. The landlord later informs the Grant County Sheriff’s Office about the COPV which is about 5 feet tall. A sergeant went to observe the situation on Monday.   

Falcon 9 debris lands in Washington

The sergeant later contacted SpaceX to inform about the debris. According to officials, SpaceX came on Tuesday and recovered the   “composite-overwrapped pressure vessel from last week’s Falcon 9’s re-entry.” A Grant County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson named Kyle Foreman stated, “Neither the property owner nor our sergeant is rocket scientists, of course, but judging from what had happened a   few days prior, it looked to them like it was possibly debris from the Falcon 9 reentry.” “Of course we didn’t have a protocol for this,  so we just erred on the side of returning someone’s property to them,” Foreman stated. 

A COPV is a part of Falcon 9’s second stage, which stores helium at pressures of nearly 6,000psi.  It pressurizes the second stage’s large tanks of propellant. Jonathan McDowell, an astrophysicist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics talked about this incident. 

“It is a bit of a puzzle that the stage was not de-orbited under control back on March  4 — looks like something went wrong, but SpaceX has said nothing about it,” he stated. “However,   reentries of this kind happen every couple of weeks. It’s just unusual that it happens over  a densely populated area, just because that’s a small fraction of the Earth.” 

Also Read: SpaceX Starship |Super Heavy BN1 Fully Stacked, Creating Largest Rocket Booster Ever Built

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