8 thoughts on “Starship History”

  1. Agreed on the Merlin vacuum engine thing. SpaceX has shown pictures of the Raptor vacuum engine sitting next to the standard one.

    Also, what does the author mean by a “tethered” Starhopper flight? I must have missed that one, and I don’t miss much when it comes to SpaceX.

    1. Starhopper was chained down during static fires, just in case, and one time lifted off to the length of the chains, something like 18 inches (as I may not remember correctlt). Calling it a “tethered flight” began as a joke, but the Internet didn’t get it.

  2. That looks to me like a typical random copy editor mistake. In my heyday, I had professional copy editors, some of whom were great, most of whom were… less than great. The worst ones were the ones who thought they were the writer. In my day, book publishers provided copy editors with style sheets for each individual writer. Sometimes that actually worked, saving the necessity of endless stetting (and some writers that I knew owned stet stamps…). Nowadays, of course, autocorrect is my worst enema.

  3. Yes, you are right about the Merlins. I think it was just a typo. He was trying to get across the fact that orbital Starships will have the three sea level optimized engines that the prototypes thus far flown have had, and also three vacuum optimized ones. He just got the name of the engine mixed up with the one already in service on Falcon 9. That’s easy enough to do, and when your editor, if you have one, has no idea what you are talking about in the first place, it’s not likely to be caught.

  4. I’ll be glad when Starship comes on line. It’s always cool to watch the Falcon boosters landing, and they’ve gotten good at it – but it isn’t a good system long-term to fall at high speed, fire the engines at the last minute and time it just right, because there’s no way to throttle the engine far enough. Not safe. It was wonderful to watch SN15 _gently_ lower itself to the ground, by firing just the right number of engines.

    1. How is this story any different or unique from thousands of other NIMBY stories wherever a new factory or airport is built? You either embrace the change or fight it. If the latter, one can hold out. Until your dying day when your heirs, who never had the endearments from a property that no longer exists, sells.

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