Elon Musk's new Starship would be a monster rocket if built. Here's how the SpaceX launch system compares to NASA's 2 biggest rockets and 2 early prototypes.

Business Insider | 7/19/2019 | Dave Mosher
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SpaceX, the rocket company founded by Elon Musk, is developing Starship: a new launch system to send people to the moon and Mars.

SpaceX has built two prototypes of the vehicle, called Starhopper and Starship Mark 1, in South Texas.

Musk - Update - Steel - Vehicle - Saturday

According to Musk, who delivered a new update about the fully reusable steel vehicle on Saturday, a completed Starship could be 387 feet tall and 30 feet in diameter.

That's significantly larger than the Saturn V rockets that helped send the Apollo 11 astronauts there. Starship may also have twice as much thrust.

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The hardware required to launch three people out to the moon, land two on the lunar surface, and then bring everyone home is monstrous. To that end during its Apollo program, NASA crafted the Saturn V rocket.

Saturn - V - Feet - Meters - Tall

Each Saturn V stood about 363 feet (111 meters) tall and 33 feet (10 meters) wide. Such scale is hard to fathom, but it's like filling up a small office tower with enough liquid fuel and oxidizer to level a small town.

The giant machine powered the world's first crewed moon-landing mission — the Apollo 11 astronauts stepped onto the moon on July 20, 1969. Five more moon landings followed, though no one has returned in decades.

Years - Interests - Sights - People - Moon

Now, 50 years later, private interests have set their sights on sending people back to the moon and on to Mars.

Blue Origin, founded by the billionaire Jeff Bezos, is competing for a lunar return with SpaceX, the aerospace company founded by Elon Musk.

Saturday - Boca - Chica - Texas - Location

On Saturday from Boca Chica, Texas — a relatively remote location at the southeastern tip of Texas, where SpaceX has created an evolving private launch site — Musk revealed the newest design for Starship.

Starship is SpaceX's towering and ostensibly fully reusable solution to deep-space travel.

Years - Musk

Over the past few years, Musk has shown...
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