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UPDATED

2nd STARHOPPER HOVER TEST, Aug 27, 2019, Boca Chica, TX, 5:00-8:00 pm ET (4:00-7:00 pm local)

Update, Aug., 27, 1:20 pm ET:  Mary @BocaChicaGal tweeted that she received a hand-delivered ALERT notice (from county officials) that SpaceX will be conducting activities today between 4:00-7:00 pm (which is 5:00-8:00 pm Eastern.)

Update, Aug 26, 8:15 pm ET:  Musk tweeted that he will indeed try again tomorrow (Aug 27) “at the same time.”  If he means that literally, it would be about 7:00 pm ET.  However, the *window* for the test opened at 5:00 pm ET, so he could have meant that.

Update, Aug 26, 7:45 pm ET:  SpaceX attemptED to conduct the test about 7:00 pm ET and the countdown clock reached T-0, but Starhopper remained on its pad.  SpaceX livestreamed the event and posted a message that said: “Test aborted just after T-0. Teams evaluating next test opportunity”.  It later said a second attempt might be attempted today, but later said it was ““standing down for today. Earliest next attempt is tomorrow.”

Update, Aug 26, 4:45 pm ET:  Musk has tweeted that the test is now “tracking to 5 pm Texas time,” which is 6:00 pm EDT.

Update, Aug 26, 11:00 am ET:  A story posted by Teslarati includes what appears to be a notice from Cameron County to residents alerting them to a SpaceX test at 4:00-4:15 local time (5:00-5:15 Eastern) today.  SpaceX has not issued any notice yet.

The FAA experimental permit is for it to hop only 150 meters in altitude rather than 200 meters, the original plan.

Update, Aug 24:  Musk tweeted that the test could “as soon as Monday.”  That’s August 26.

Update, Aug 21:  @SpacePadreIsle tweeted today that all the road closure notices have been cancelled, suggesting that the test has been postponed again.  SpaceX has not made any announcement.

Update, Aug 16:  The Twitter account for someone in South Padre Island, near Boca Chica, tweeted today that local authorities have now issued road closure notices for Aug 21, 22 and 23, suggesting those are the new dates for when the test may take place.

Update, Aug 15:  Musk tweeted that the FAA wants additional hazard analysis and the test will be “soon.”

Update, Aug 13:  NOTAMs have been issued for Aug 16-18.

Original Entry: SpaceX is getting ready to conduct a second test of its Starhopper vehicle, which is part of the development of its Starship vehicle that is designed to take people and cargo to the Moon and Mars. Starship will be launched using SpaceX’s Super Heavy rocket, which also is under development.

The date is tentative.

Starhopper is a test vehicle that uses one Raptor engine to lift briefly off the ground, move horizontally, and land (“hop”).  It moved 20 meters during its first test on July 25.  The goal is 200 meters for the 2nd test.

SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk tweeted on August 9 that the test will be “no sooner than a week” as the company is “Working approvals with FAA.”  FAA must post Notices to Airmen (NOTAMs) to clear the airspace above the test site in Boca Chica, TX when tests are underway.  Other FAA approvals also may be necessary.  The FAA regulates and facilitates the commercial space launch industry.

SpaceX does not provide much information about these tests.  One can keep up to date on Twitter by following Mary (@BocaChicaGal), a resident of the Boca Chica area who keeps close track of what is happening at the test site and posts videos; Chris Bergin and Chris Gephardt at NASASpaceflight.com (@NASASpaceflight and @ChrisG_NSF) who also post detailed stories on their website (which is not affiliated with NASA); and Tim Dodd, Everyday Astronaut (@ErdayAstronaut).

Details

Date:
August 27
Time:
8:00 am - 11:00 pm