SpaceX Starship plant sprouts another nosecone as SN10 nears completion

Days after SpaceX’s second full-altitude spacecraft prototype suffered a slight collapse in an assembly bay, the company’s South Texas Rocket Factory began finalizing the nose of its younger brother.

On December 19, SpaceX began the final stacking work needed to complete the SN10 spacecraft nose section, consisting of a conical nose.cone Over several steel rings. Unlike Starships SN8 and SN9, the first two flying-worthy models to reach their full height, the Starship SN10 assembly will be one shorter loop (five to four) for unknown reasons – a discounted nose ring is instead added to the top of the tank section.

Starship SN9 monitors as nosecone SN10 enters final assembly stages. (NASASpaceflight – Pocachecagal)

If the job isn’t really complete, SpaceX’s integration team will join the nose and loops with one or two circumferential welders, traveling in circumference of 28 meters (approximately 90 feet). In the margins, you’ll also need to connect the avionics wires, hydraulic tubing, and liquid oxygen supply lines needed to operate the cold gas propellers into the nose, flaps, and fuel head tank – first from the nose section to the nose ring and again once the SN10 is complete its nose is stacked on top of the rest Airframe.

The SN9 spacecraft was stacked to its full height on November 25, five days after the nose-stacking work began. (NASASpaceflight – Pocachecagal)

If the Starship SN10 production reflects the SN9, the missile nose section will be ready for final installation as early as December 25th, or take a day or two. In the event that the two processes closely match, Starship SN9 – still recovering from the collapse of the working platform that destroyed two panels – will need to be transported from the high bay in which it was assembled.

As it happens, SpaceX has unspecified road closures scheduled from approximately 8 AM to 5 PM Central American Time (UTC-6) on December 21, 22 and 23. could Used to transport the Starship SN9 and the crane needed to lift it to the launch pad. The Starship SN10’s tank and engine section will then be rotated from mid-cradle to high bay to mount the nose section. As seen by Starship SN8, SpaceX could also settle for a less desirable option if SN9 needs more time, and Starship SN10’s nose fits in the open.

In the end , The SN9 spacecraft miraculously appears to have survived A major mistake in handling that would have easily turned fatal and would have almost certainly marked the end of any other missile in production. Still, if SN9 is present Do you Make it to the test stand but failed during testing or during its high-altitude launch attempt, the Starship SN10 would likely be ready to take the torch forward as soon as it is needed.

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