Image credit: SpaceX

SpaceX is confirming that the second flight test of a fully integrated Starship from their Texas starport is set to launch Saturday, November 18.

A twenty-minute launch window opens at 7:00 a.m. Central Time.

“As is the case with all developmental testing, the schedule is dynamic and likely to change, so be sure to stay tuned to our X account for updates,” a SpaceX central posting explains.

Image credit: SpaceX

Flight stages

This Integrated Flight Test 2 is projected to see the two-stage Starship launch vehicle depart its now water-cooled pad, then the  booster is expected to separate 170 seconds into flight and return to an ocean splashdown approximately 20 miles (32 kilometers) off the shore in the Gulf of Mexico.

The Starship second stage will follow a suborbital trajectory and perform an unpowered splashdown roughly 62 miles (100 kilometers) off the northwest coast of Kauai (Hawaii).

Image credit: SpaceX

Image credit: SpaceX/Inside Outer Space screengrab

Recursive improvement

“Starship’s first flight test provided numerous lessons learned that directly contributed to several upgrades to both the vehicle and ground infrastructure to improve the probability of success on future flights,” the SpaceX posting adds.

“The second flight test will debut a hot-stage separation system and a new electronic Thrust Vector Control (TVC) system for Super Heavy Raptor engines, in addition to reinforcements to the pad foundation and a water-cooled steel flame deflector, among many other enhancements,” SpaceX points out. “Recursive improvement is essential as we work to build a fully reusable transportation system capable of carrying both crew and cargo to Earth orbit, help humanity return to the Moon, and ultimately travel to Mars and beyond,” the SpaceX posting concludes.

Go to this informative video at:

To follow the Starship second test flight launch, go to:

https://www.spacex.com/launches/mission/?missionId=starship-flight-2

“What, Me Worry?”

Image credit: Elon Musk by Walter Isaacson/Simon & Schuster

Image credit: SpaceX/Inside Outer Space screengrab

 

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