The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has already scanned the Starship 10 (SN10) serial number for flight, shortening any potential licensing drama facing the recent high-altitude spacecraft launch efforts.
Less than three weeks ago, Starship 9’s serial number (SN9) took off from SpaceX’s launch facilities in southern Texas after a boring week or so of vague licensing “ woes ” that the Federal Aviation Administration had mysteriously addressed. The regulator has not actually provided an explanation as to why it publicly pulled SpaceX through coal in January and February for alleged “launch license violations” during the Starship SN8’s December 8 launch, nor why the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) only raised these alleged issues to more than A month after the fact.
Ultimately, the most likely explanation for its inconsistent and largely lacking response is that the Federal Aviation Administration itself – less than SpaceX – made a mistake somewhere along the lines of the SN8 Aviation license and only discovered the bug after the launch had finished. On purpose or not, the agency did everything it could to blame SpaceX, never providing enough details for aliens to determine the cause of the quarrel. If it was clear that SpaceX was at fault, nothing would stop the Federal Aviation Administration from providing a true explanation to the public or publishing unquestioned evidence that would inevitably follow such a deliberate and calculated violation of a launch license.
Of course, the Federal Aviation Administration has never released those clear statements or provide those clear answers. Thankfully, though, Starship SN9 I was Finally for the journey. Now, less than a month later, the Starship SN10 is also allowed to make flight after the FAA “SpaceX awarded a launch mod for the Starship SN10”. It’s unclear why SpaceX was chosen – or forced – to modify the current Starship’s mass launch license between three nearly identical launches, but regardless, the SN10 is now the first spacecraft to receive FAA permission to launch well at high altitudes SpaceX itself has done. Remove the flight vehicle.
As of deployment, SpaceX is in the middle of a Monday window from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Central American Time (UTC-6) designated for the Starship SN10’s first wet dress rehearsal (WDR) and a steady firing attempt for the Raptor engine. The Commodores have closed the only access road for hours, but SpaceX has yet to evacuate the launch pad. If work continues on the platform and the missile, the Starship SN10’s most important pre-test acceptance test will likely move into a similar window on Tuesday or Wednesday.
SpaceX has already introduced temporary flight restrictions (TFRs) with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for potential SN10 launch attempts on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday, indicating the company hopes to divert the Starship to flight 24-72 hours after a successful static fire. Stay tuned for updates as SpaceX is rolling out the third Starship launch before the month ends.