First Engine Delivered To SpaceX Starship
The first raptor engine is on its way to the Starship hopper this week. Elon Musk announced on Friday that the second completed raptor engines was already on its way to the hopper test vehicle and would be installed this week.
Following the installation on the hopper ship, SpaceX will begin testing the engine. First will be many static fire tests, tests loading all the propellant onto the ship, and following those a low-altitude hover test. This test could see the hopper ship lift off the ground only a few inches at first. Subsequent test hops would see the ship go higher and higher as the SpaceX team trusts the ship and its engines more.
The Starship is expected to have seven engines in total when completed. SpaceX is expected to continually add engines to the hopper craft as they are manufactured and begin testing them all together towards the end of construction.
SpaceX hopes to launch their first Starship and SuperHeavy rocket by 2020.
Meanwhile, in Boca Chica, humans are preparing to feed the Starship Hopper at the launch site. Doesn't have a Raptor yet, but that'll soon change. Then some fun with tethered training hops!— Chris B - NSF (@NASASpaceflight) March 10, 2019
📸NSF's BocaChicaGal here..https://t.co/5vehQHuDek pic.twitter.com/Pux2aDdJMX