SpaceX publishes the first images of the Starship Super Heavy, its largest and most powerful rocket

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SpaceX has published this Monday the first images of its reusable Starship spacecraft and the progress of the assembly of its Super Heavy propulsion system, which will soon star a first orbital flight test.

Both the company and its founder, Elon Musk, shared a series of photos showing the completed assembly of the 29 Raptor engines that will power their largest and most powerful rocket to date. “Installing Starship Boost Engines for First Orbital Flight”, tweeted Musk.

The images also distinguish the four grille fins that will serve for aerodynamic control.

Additional shots taken by photographers who visited the facility show other advancements in the Starship SN20 prototype, on which they can be seen placed thermal plates designed to overcome high temperatures upon re-entry into the atmosphere.

According to SpaceX plans, Starship SN20 will leave the atmosphere and re-enter its first orbit before attempting a soft landing off the coast of the Hawaiian island of Kauai in the Pacific Ocean. Meanwhile, the Super Heavy rocket will try to land in the Gulf of Mexico, off the coast of Boca Chica. The flight is planned to last just over 90 minutes.

Future versions of the Super Heavy are expected to be comprised of 33 Raptor engines, which together will contribute to a total thrust of approximately 230,000 kilograms at sea level.

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With its Starship, SpaceX seeks transport cargo and people to the Moon, Mars and other space missions. Each will be capable of carrying loads of more than 100 tons and 100 passengers at a time, according to the company.

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