CEO Elon Musk said SpaceX has delayed launch of spacecraft No. 11 (SN11) at high altitude for the first time from Friday to Monday to ensure the company can “land and fully recover” the rigid 50-meter missile.
First and foremost, the weekend will give SpaceX time to do “extra pulls” and search for Starship SN11 and data produced during tests for any red flags or minor issues. While plans for regular filming on the same day did not take off on Friday, March 26, SpaceX handled the first half, pulling only one of three Starship Raptors to validate the replacement engine after the Raptor traded on Thursday. . The tests were the first time SpaceX had intentionally launched one Raptor mounted on a prototype three-engine spacecraft, so the delay would save extra time to ensure the three remain in good condition.
Stay on SN11 until Monday probably. Additional withdrawals required. We are doing our best to land and recover completely.
Elon Musk (elonmusk) March 26, 2021
The weather in Boca Chica, Texas has also deteriorated in recent days, so an extra few days will also (hopefully) improve wind, visibility, and precipitation conditions. According to Musk, the SN11 spacecraft is now scheduled to fly early Monday “in the afternoon,” and as usual, SpaceX will provide live coverage of its fourth high-altitude launch and landing attempt which will begin minutes before take-off.
Hopefully, the Starship prototype will be able to continue the trend of iterative improvement and the Starship SN10 with a softer, uninterrupted landing within minutes of landing. Stay tuned for updates here and on SpaceX’s social media platforms to watch the official webcast.
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