SpaceX just flew a full-size prototype of its Starship Mars-colonizing spacecraft for the first time ever.
The Starship SN5 test vehicle took to the skies for about 40 seconds on August 4th at SpaceX’s facilities near the South Texas village of Boca Chica, performing a small hop that could end up being a big step toward human exploration of the Red Planet.
“Mars is looking real,” Musk tweeted shortly after today’s test flight.
If all goes well, we could see Starship and Super Heavy flying together soon, on exciting and important missions. The SpaceX system is a contender to land NASA astronauts on the moon in the mid-2020s and beyond, for example. And Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa has booked a crewed Starship trip around the moon, with a targeted launch date of 2023.
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