Published: Tue, February 05, 2019
Markets | By Otis Pena

Elon Musk shows off first firing of SpaceX's Starship Raptor engine

Elon Musk shows off first firing of SpaceX's Starship Raptor engine

Elon Musk has taken to Twitter to post a video of Space X's new Starship Raptor rocket engine, and it's extremely enjoyable to watch. The Starship Hopper - the smaller prototype craft that will be used for hop tests rather than going all the way into space - sustained damage when it tipped over in high winds at the launch facility.

Last year, Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa was announced as SpaceX's first private traveller on the moon trip, scheduled to take place in 2023.

Even though the test firing propels the Raptor around the corner past the proof of concept stage, Musk acknowledged there's still plenty of engineering kinks to be ironed out, tweeting that future versions will test other configurations aimed at optimizing thrust both in space and at sea level.

The Raptor will represent a technological break for SpaceX engines.

Back in December, Musk tweeted that he had redesigned the engine.

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Despite Musk being clearly pleased with the "great work" his team have done on this project, SpaceX laid off around 10% of its workforce, or more than 600 employees, in January.

The recent test wasn't the first firing of any kind of Raptor.

This isn't, therefore, the first time the Raptor engine has ever been fired - SpaceX has fired individual components before and experimented with various designs. SpaceX tested a development version of the Raptor in September 2016, also at the McGregor site.

SpaceX test-fired February 3 the first flight version of the Raptor engine the company has developed for its next-generation launch system. "Will take a few weeks to fix".

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