#5972957 at 2019-03-30 04:29:35 (UTC+1) Q Research General #7639: Revoke The Fake News Pulitzers Edition
Meet SpaceX's Starship Hopper
SpaceX continues to amaze in popularizing space exploration. Not only is it doing fantastic work in reaching and exploring space, shown by its efforts to transport supplies and astronauts to the International Space Station, it also flaunts retro exhibitions that capture the interest of people worldwide. Recently, Elon Musk - the CEO of SpaceX - released images and information on what he calls the "Starship" Hopper test rocket.
The prototype hopper was recently constructed in a project that will hopefully be used to help colonize Mars. Anyone who follows Musk will know that he is a keen advocate of going to Mars, and with scientists and engineers urging everyone to get behind an exploration mission that can take us to a whole new frontier, it is now becoming more of a reality than a dream. Starship and its huge first-stage booster, Super Heavy - which together were formerly known as the Big Falcon Rocket (BFR) - could be the vehicles to undertake this important task. In order for Starship and Super Heavy to be successful, there are many things to take into account, and a lot of power needs to be exerted.
This is not just another 384,400-kilometer (238,855 miles) mission to the moon. This is going to be a journey more than 140 times longer. This means that there needs to be enough food, supplies and protection from the harmful radiation of space in order to survive this journey, and even then there's the question of how much fuel is needed to break free of Earth's gravity and make it Mars.
These are the reasons why a voyage to Mars is a struggle. But nothing good ever comes easy. SpaceX has shown extremely promising signs of improved space exploration with the introduction of reusable rockets, and now Musk has released the first images of the Starship prototype that will soon undergo short "hopping" excursions to test its feasibility. These vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) tests will hover up to 5 kilometers (3 miles) above the ground before landing back on Earth. The hopper prototype towers at a height of about 39 meters (128 feet) and has a diameter of 9 meters (30 feet), with a stainless-steel exterior starting at its pointy tip to its three rear "fins" that serve as its legs as it stands on the ground.
Starship looks strikingly like something out of a 1950s science-fiction comic book, and that's because it was modelled after one. Again, anyone who follows Musk will also know that he is a huge fan of cultural references in his SpaceX work. Back in February 2018, Musk tested the Falcon Heavy, in the process launching one of his sister company's Tesla cars into an orbit around the sun. Inside the Tesla was Starman, a human-scale mannequin with SpaceX's spacesuit, given its name after the 1972 hit song by David Bowie.
In the case of Starship, the rocket was inspired by the 1954 adventure of comic-book hero Tintin in "Explorers on the Moon." Although Starship doesn't have the red-and-white checkered appearance of Tintin's rocket, everything else is remarkably similar. This inspiration was confirmed by Musk at an event in September 2018, which he followed up by saying: "If in doubt, go with Tintin." Musk tweeted a picture of the prototype sitting at one of SpaceX's factories near Boca Chica Village in Texas.
Starship and Super Heavy will both utilize the powerful Raptor engine that SpaceX is still working on. It has been suggested that in June 2019 SpaceX will create the orbital prototype of Starship and connect it to the Super Heavy booster for improved testing.
This project is sure to be an extremely exciting one to follow. Musk has outlined his ambitions to conduct two unmanned cargo missions to Mars by 2022, followed by a crewed trip around the moon and back as early as 2023; this latter mission will carry 43-year-old Japanese billionaire YusakuMaezawa. Then, by 2024, SpaceX could be ready to conduct crewed missions to Mars. This will provide the platform for creating settlements on Mars, and science fiction will become a firm reality. After that, the possibilities are endless. Could Mars be the answer to problems on Earth?
#4713429 at 2019-01-11 20:14:56 (UTC+1) Q Research General #6015: Fantastic Friday Edition
SpaceX Finishes Building 'Starship' Hopper Prototype (Photo)
SpaceX has built itself a shiny new rocket.
Assembly of the test-flight version of SpaceX's Mars-colonizing Starship vehicle is now complete, SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk announced Thursday night (Jan. 10). The suborbital, hopping rocket is a sleek, shiny craft with three prominent fins that end in landing pads.
"Starship test-flight rocket just finished assembly at the @SpaceX Texas launch site. This is an actual picture, not a rendering," Musk said via Twitter. He also posted a photo of the vehicle, which included a spacesuit-clad person for scale.
The construction milestone seems to keep SpaceX on target to begin short "hopping" flights with the prototype vehicle soon. Musk said earlier this week that SpaceX aims to start such trial runs, which will take place at the Texas site near Brownsville, in the next four to eight weeks.
These flights will be similar to those that SpaceX performed in 2012 and 2013 with its Grasshopper test vehicle, Musk added in another tweet Thursday night. The Grasshopper runs, which helped SpaceX get ready to land and re-fly Falcon 9 rocket first stages, reached a maximum altitude of about 2,500 feet (700 meters).
The bona fide Starship will go very far afield, however. SpaceX envisions Starship - which will launch atop a giant rocket called the Super Heavy - taking 100 passengers at a time to and from the moon and Mars, and perhaps other deep-destinations as well. (These names are a recent development. SpaceX had called the reusable rocket-spaceship duo the BFR, short for "Big Falcon Rocket.")
Starship and the Super Heavy will do a variety of other work as well. SpaceX plans to have the duo take over all of the company's spaceflight duties eventually, from launching satellites to supplying and servicing orbiting space stations to ferrying people on superfast "point to point" trips around the globe. SpaceX has already booked the first passenger for Starship, billionaire YusakuMaezawa, the founder of Japanese e-commerce giant Zozo, for a trip around the moon some time in the 2020s.
SpaceX's Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets are white, but Starship and the hopper will remain shiny, unpainted metallic silver, Musk has said. But the latter pair will be far from identical. The operational vehicle will have windows, and seven Raptor engines compared to three for the hopper.
And the two vehicles will be different in other ways as well.
"This is for suborbital VTOL [vertical takeoff and landing] tests. Orbital version is taller, has thicker skins (won't wrinkle) & a smoothly curving nose section," Musk said in another tweet.
The first orbital Starship prototype should be finished "around June," he added in another tweet.
If the testing and development campaign goes well, Starship and Super Heavy could begin flying Mars missions as early as the mid-2020s, Musk has said.
#3075134 at 2018-09-18 20:55:08 (UTC+1) Q Research General #3891: Polish Babka Edition
YusakuMaezawa founder of Japan's largest e-comm retailer, will be the first private space tourist with SpaceX.
Billionaire "wins" the "contest" ? Suuuuure. Nothing to see here, As our friend would say.
Quick dig on YusakuMaezawa:
== Contemporary Art Foundation Maezawa is the founder of the Tokyo-based Contemporary Art Foundation, which he started in 2012 with a goal of "supporting young artists as a pillar of the next generation of contemporary art." The Contemporary Art Foundation currently hosts collection shows twice a year. In May 2016 Maezawa attracted significant media attention with a record purchase price at auction of $57.3 million for an untitled work by Jean-Michel Basquiat, and broke a record again in May 2017 with a $110.5 million auction for a piece by the same artist. At the same 2016 auction, Maezawa bought pieces by Bruce Nauman, Alexander Calder, Richard Prince, and Jeff Koons, spending a total of $98 million over two days. Maezawa plans to open a contemporary art museum in Chiba, which will house his collection. ==
#3066724 at 2018-09-18 04:09:48 (UTC+1) Q Research General #3880: PAIN INCOMING Edition
SpaceX announces that Japanese billionaire YusakuMaezawa will be first passenger on planned trip around the moon.