Space enthusiasts from around the world are eagerly waiting to watch SpaceX founder Elon Musk’s presentation tonight. SpaceX stacked Starship atop Super Heavy for the first time using the Starbase launch tower’s robotic arms ahead of Musk's update presentation at Boca Chica Beach, Texas. It is the very first time engineers use the robotic arms to stack the 100-ton vehicle, instead of a crane. He shared stunning images of the rocket-ship’s stacking operation, including a video clip (shown below). It is incredible to see the crab-like arms slowly carry the giant Starship up the 400-foot-tall launch tower. The stacking operation took a couple of hours to complete but it took engineers weeks to prepare everything for this moment. The presentation is scheduled to take place on February 10 at 8:00 p.m. Central Time. SpaceX will broadcast the event live via the SpaceX.com/launches website and on its YouTube channel. Musk has provided periodic updates of SpaceX’s goal to make life multi-planetary since 2016, the last presentation took place before the coronavirus outbreak in 2019.
We can expect to see Musk standing on a stage in front of the 394-foot-high Starship/Super Heavy launch vehicle during tonight’s presentation. Musk will share with the world details about the Mars-bound Starship development progress and officially reveal the flight profile for the debut orbital spaceflight. The company is pending approval from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to test launch the stainless-steel vehicle prototype. The FAA is currently working on an environmental assessment of the Boca Chica launch facility that will be completed until February 28. SpaceX will receive a license to launch Starship to orbit from South Texas when the FAA completes their review.
A Harmony of Machine and Metal— LabPadre (@LabPadre) February 10, 2022
Ship 20 has been fully stacked ontop of Booster 4
Such a beautiful centerpiece for tommorow's updatehttps://t.co/YPpaKi5nY8#Starship #SpaceX #Starbase #Texas pic.twitter.com/tdZjNRmytp
Starship is destined to become the world’s largest and most powerful rocket. It will be capable of returning astronauts to the lunar surface and enable humanity to build the first city on Mars. Veteran NASA Astronaut Chris Hadfield expressed his excitement when he saw that SpaceX fully-stacked the spacecraft. –“I’m inspired when our accomplishment catches up to our imagination, even for a moment,” wrote Mr. Hadfield. Besides stacking Starship atop the Super Heavy rocket, the launch tower is also designed to ‘catch’ the vehicles when each return from space! The presentation will provide more insight about SpaceX’s bold plans to ‘catch’ orbital-class rockets and we could also see an official animation of how the mechanism will work.
Featured Images Source: SpaceX Founder Elon Musk via Twitter
About the Author
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.