Photo credit: Official SpaceX Image
|Fate:||Remains at the launch site
in Boca Chica, Texas
Following SpaceX’s decision to switch away from a carbon fiber material to stainless steel instead, construction started on Starhopper began in late December 2018. Starhopper was construction in an open field, a radical change from most rocket manufacturing techniques.
Starhopper was originally fitted with a nose cone, which was later scrapped following damage caused by it tipping over in a windstorm. Elon Musk later announced that there no plans to build a new nose cone, and tests proceeded with just the lower portion of the body.
By March 2019 Spacehopper was complete, with a single raptor engine and was then moved to the pad area on 8 March. After cryogenic testing through March, Starhopper’s first static fire took place on 3 April. Starhopper flew three times, each time increasing its vertical height from simple 1m hops to a final 150m vertical hop which saw it land 100m away from the launch pad.
Following the third hop, Starhopper was retired and remains at the launch site.
All dates & times are local unless otherwise indicated.