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 after it was moved to its display area on 4 October.
All dates & times are local unless otherwise indicated.