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SpaceX's Starhopper is gearing up for a major test next week that will see the ship hover briefly off the ground.
The test was announced on Twitter by the aerospace company's CEO, Elon Musk, who tweeted simply, 'Raptor engine mounted on Starhopper. Aiming for hover test Tuesday.'
Tests - Ship - Ground - Meters - Meters
Unlike previous tests, the giant ship won't be tethered to the ground but instead will attempt to rise 20 meters -- as well as 20 meters sideways -- into the air and then safely nestle back down onto the launch pad.
Two other tests from the company lifted Starhopper just inches of the launch pad.
Musk - Raptor - Enginers - Craft - Ground
According to Musk, the Raptor enginers used to lift the craft off the ground are 'dangerously chuggy' when fired under 40 percent, so the rockets will be fired at 50 percent power.
It's worth noting that the scheduled date for SpaceX's test -- Tuesday July 16 -- is also the 50th anniversary of NASA's Apollo 11 launch which landed humans on the lunar surface for the first time in history.
Starhopper - Test - Vehicle - SpaceX - Goal
Starhopper is the test vehicle for SpaceX's ultimate goal of developing a sleeker craft called the Starship which Musk hopes will eventually take human passengers on a number of missions into space.
Among them, Musk hopes that the Starship, previously known as BFR, Big Falcon Rocket,...
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