SpaceX Displays Starship Raptor Vacuum Engine at McGregor Founder's Day Parade

SpaceX Displays Starship Raptor Vacuum Engine at McGregor Founder's Day Parade

In a surprising event, SpaceX participated in the annual McGregor Founder's Day Parade, leaving onlookers in awe as they showcased a colossal Starship Raptor Vacuum Engine. The event marked SpaceX’s first public appearance at the parade in the small town of McGregor, which has been home to the company's rocket-testing facility since 2003. The small town has a population of approximately 6,000.

The local KWTX news outlet reports that SpaceX employees displayed the Starship Raptor on the back of a trailer during the parade and they cruised down the street alongside other parade participants. As the engine made its way through the streets of downtown McGregor, people enthusiastically waved at the spectacle. SpaceX employees and their families, riding on the trailer hauling the enormous engine, reciprocated the excitement by tossing candy to the crowd, see video clip linked below.

The Raptor Vacuum Engine is a crucial component of SpaceX's ambitious plans to return NASA Astronauts to the Moon and send humans to Mars with Starship. The spacecraft is equipped with three sea-level Raptors designed for atmospheric flight and three vacuum-optimized Raptor engines designed for propulsion in space. 

The Starship launch system is actively under development at the Starbase facility situated at the southernmost tip of Texas at Boca Chica Beach. Notably, SpaceX also participated at the Boca Chica city of Brownsville ‘Charro Days’ festivities in February 2022 with a similar Raptor engine display during a parade, as previously reported by TESMANIAN. Read more: SpaceX Starbase participates at the City of Brownsville’s Charro Days Parade, Elon Musk attends Sombrero Fest! 

Every SpaceX rocket engine undergoes rigorous testing at the McGregor facility before being shipped to facilities at California, Boca Chica, or Florida, from where rockets liftoff. While McGregor remains an integral part of SpaceX's engine testing operations, the surprise appearance of the Raptor Vacuum Engine in the Founder's Day Parade has given the town and space enthusiasts a unique opportunity to witness a piece of SpaceX's groundbreaking work up close.

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About the Author

Evelyn Janeidy Arevalo

Evelyn Janeidy Arevalo

Evelyn J. Arevalo joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover news as a Space Journalist and SpaceX Starbase Texas Correspondent. Evelyn is specialized in rocketry and space exploration. The main topics she covers are SpaceX and NASA.

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