Yesterday, Elon Musk once again took to Twitter to give us a sneak peek at the prototype of The Starship, SpaceX’s flagship spaceship. The space vehicle earlier titled BFR was renamed to The Starship in November by Elon Musk, inspired by the sci-pop franchise Star Trek.
Elon’s $ 5 billion space toy is currently being assembled at its Boca Chica, Texas launch facility. The Spaceship is said to take over the reins from the Falcon 9 and the Falcon 9 Heavy as the primary launch vehicle for the company.
According to the images, the prototype looks sleek, minimalistic and has a design very much reminiscent of the ’50s and ’40s sci-fi flicks with its stainless steel body. But the actual working model would be slightly different. As Elon mentioned, it would have windows. It is also going to be 30 ft wide and much taller than the prototype which will be serving as the test-mule.
Elon Musk, via Twitter
Starship test vehicle under assembly will look similar to this illustration when finished. Operational Starships would obv have windows, etc.
Musk expects the Starship to be ready for orbital travel by 2020. SpaceX has already signed Japanese billionaire entrepreneur Yusaku Maezawa to be the first private citizen to take a 240,000 flight around the Moon in the Starship. The testing phase is slated to begin in March during which SpaceX will launch the rocket to suborbital heights to prove the viability of the Starship’s systems. 2020 can’t come any sooner as it would be a dream come true to finally see commercial space travel become reality.