Elon Musk reveals assembled Starship test rocket

Elon Musk has revealed images of his assembled Starship hopper test rocket, as the entrepreneur continues to explore ways of one day sending people to places as far as Mars.

The SpaceX founder shared the first real images of the prototype from its Texas launch site, telling Twitter followers it is “not a rendering”.

“This is for suborbital VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) tests,” Mr Musk explained. “Orbital version is taller, has thicker skins (won’t wrinkle) & a smoothly curving nose section.”

This particular model will be used to test short launches and landings. Earlier this month, the billionaire said SpaceX was aiming to carry out test flights within four weeks, but admitted it could be as long as eight weeks when unforeseen issues are factored in.

Responding to questions from space enthusiasts, Mr Musk said that the first orbital prototype should be ready by June.

In November, the rocket was renamed from Big Falcon Rocket to Starship.

This week marks a busy period for SpaceX, with the company due to launch another batch of satellites into space on its Falcon 9 rocket later on Friday.

- Press Association


More in this Section

Body painting can stop blood-sucking horseflies, research suggests

How Jeremy Corbyn’s no confidence motion will work

Brexit options: What potential outcomes remain?

Crushing defeat for May must pave way for second EU referendum, Sturgeon demands


Lifestyle

As Kate Moss turns 45, here are 7 style lessons we’ve learned from her

New series explores Ireland's remote townlands and its people

James McAvoy is a Glass act in latest film

Turning 30: Regrets, advice and reflection from those who've hit the milestone

More From The Irish Examiner