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Starship (Super Heavy Starship, BFR, Big Falcon Rocket)

Starship (B4/S20) [SpaceX]

Super Heavy Starship [SpaceX]

Starship (formerly known as BFR (Big Falcon Rocket and BFS (Big Falcon Spaceship) is a planned very large completely reusable crewed launch system by SpaceX that is intended by the company to replace all SpaceX's existing launch vehicles and spacecraft by the mid 2020s.

The rockets are completely reusable on both stages. The expected landing reliability is to be on a par with major airliners. The vehicle has a principal diameter of 9 meters and is built from satinless steel. It is powered by SpaceX own Raptor engines running on liquid methane and oxygen. The Super Heavy Starship will be 118 m high and will weigh 4400 t at launch.

The system consists of two parts:

  • The 68 m long booster stage, called Super Heavy, which is powered by 33 Raptor engines (only 29 in the expendable prototypes). This stage will either return to the launch site or land off-shore on a floating platform by powered reentry and landing. On reentry, the stage is steered by four large actuated grid fins, which are designed to control its descent and be caught by the launch tower's pair of mechanical arms in midair. The stage has a propellant capacity of 3300 tons.
  • The 50 m Starship upper stage is also built from stainless steel with a principal diameter of 9 m. This stage is powered by 3 standard Raptor engines and 3 fixed vaccum-optimzed raptor engines. The Starship has a dry mass of 85 tons and has a propellant capacity of 1200 tons. The ascent payload capacity is 150 t to low earth orbit and it has a return capacity of 50 t. The Starship is to reenter belly-first with two aft fins and two canards provide skydiver-like steering. The maximum heating areas are covered by rugged ceramic-tiles. The Starship comes in different versions as crewed ships, cargo ships or tankers for in-orbit refueling of other Starships. The front part houses either the crew compartments, cargo compartments or tanks. Starships are are capable of automated rendezvous and docking. It is also designed to be able to land both on moon and Mars. The Spaceship contains 1000-1100 m3 of pressurized volume; could be configured with 40 cabins, large common areas, central storage, galley, and a solar storm shelter in Mars transit configuration.

Launch sites are at Boca Chica, Texas, and at Cape Canaveral, Florida.

Version Stage 1 Stage 2
Starship BN4/SN20 Booster / 29 × Raptor Ship / 3 × Raptor, 3 × Raptor-Vac
Starship BN7/SN24 Booster / 33 × Raptor-2 Ship / 3 × Raptor-2, 3 × Raptor-2Vac
Starship Booster / 33 × Raptor-2 Ship / 3 × Raptor-2, 3 × Raptor-2Vac
Performance (kg) LEO LPEO SSO GTO GEO MolO IP
Starship (BFR, Big Falcon Rocket) 150000
Starship (BFR, Big Falcon Rocket) (exp) 250000
No.TypNo Type                 Date           LS             Payload 


planned launches

 1    1  Starship B7/S24 ?   xx.2H.2022      BC OLP-1       Starship S24 F1 R&D ?
xx    1  Starship-HLS        xx.xx.2024      CCK LC-39B/2   Starship-HLS 1
xx    2  Starship-HLS        xx.xx.2024      CCK LC-39B/2   Starship-HLS 2
xx    x  Starship-Cargo      xx.xx.2024      CCK LC-39B/2   Superbird 9

Launch sites:

BC  = Starbase (SpaceX South Texas Launch Site) , Boca Chica, Texas, USA USA
CCK = NASA John F. Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral, Florida, USA USA

Source: SpaceX Website

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