[8], In September 2013, the State of Texas General Land Office (GLO) and Cameron County signed an agreement outlining how beach closures would be handled in order to support a future SpaceX launch schedule. For much of this period, a parcel of land adjacent to Boca Chica Beach near Brownsville, Texas, was the leading candidate location, during an extended period while the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) conducted an extensive environmental assessment on the use of the Texas location as a launch site. Prior to launch, SpaceX founder Elon Musk said on Twitter that there was a “probably 1/3 chance of completing all mission objectives.”. The third attempt propelled the SN8 prototype, standing for Serial No. In late 2018, construction ramped up considerably, and the site saw the fabrication of the first 30 ft-diameter (9 m) prototype test vehicle, Starhopper, which was tested and flown March–August 2019. Photo: Wikimedia, CC BY 2.0. SpaceX announced in August 2014, that they had selected the location near Brownsville as the location for the new non-governmental launch site,[8] after the final environmental assessment completed and environmental agreements were in place by July 2014. "[38][39], In February 2014, they purchased 28 additional lots that surround the proposed complex at Boca Chica Beach, raising the SpaceX-owned land to approximately 36 acres (150,000 m2) in addition to the 56-acre (230,000 m2) lease. ", "FAA Notice of Intent to conduct an Environmental Impact Statement", "Brownsville area candidate for spaceport", "Texas reaches out to land spaceport deal with SpaceX", "SpaceX buys more land in Cameron County", "FAA approves SpaceX application to launch rockets from Cameron County beach", "New documents reveal SpaceX's plans for launching Mars-rocket prototypes from South Texas", "WRITTEN RE-EVALUATION OF THE 2014 FINAL ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT FOR THE SPACEX TEXAS LAUNCH SITE", "ADDENDUM TO THE 2019 WRITTEN RE-EVALUATION FOR SPACEX'S REUSABLE LAUNCH VEHICLE EXPERIMENTAL TEST PROGRAM AT THE SPACEX LAUNCH SITE", "Cameron County closes two streets for SpaceX", "The New Residents: Renovation planned for house linked to SpaceX". This is Maria Pointer's historical page. The SpaceX Starship prototype takes a 150-meter "hop" on August 4, 2020, in Boca Chica, which is located in south Texas just outside of Brownsville. This is not a free roam game, it will only be open for SpaceX Virtual investors. * denotes unflown vehicles or engines, and future missions or sites. SpaceX is planning a resort at its Texas launch facility, job posting reveals. In May and August 2019, the FAA issued a written report with a decision that a new supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) would not be required. [59], Although SpaceX initial plans for the Boca Chica launch site are to loft robotic spacecraft to geosynchronous orbits, Elon Musk indicated in September 2014 that "the first person to go to another planet could launch from [the Boca Chica launch site]",[60] but did not indicate which launch vehicle might be used for those launches. Andrea Leinfelder is the space reporter for the Houston Chronicle. [65], By March 2020, SpaceX had doubled the number of employees onsite for Starship manufacturing, test and operations since January, with over 500 employees working at the site. Starship will be a gigantic two-stage launch vehicle consisting of the spacecraft - Starship - and a rocket booster called Super Heavy. Previous Boca Chica tests: SpaceX Starship prototype takes second hop in South Texas SpaceX said it was conducting a “high-altitude suborbital flight test.” LabPadre, a … [56], In late 2018, the "Mars Crossing" subdivision developed into a shipyard, with the development of several large hangars, and several concrete jigs, on top of which large steel rocket airframes were fabricated, the first of which became the Starhopper test article. [58], The new launch facility was projected in a 2014 study to generate US$85 million of economic activity in the city of Brownsville and eventually generate approximately US$51 million in annual salaries from some 500 jobs projected to be created by 2024. “Successful ascent, switchover to header tanks & precise flap control to landing point! (Photo by - / SPACEX / AFP) /. This SpaceX Status Report is updated throughout the day. On its live video feed, the text “Awesome test. Canceled – 12/11/2020 – … Legislation was introduced in the Texas Legislature to enable temporary closings of State beaches during launches, limit liability for noise and some other specific commercial spaceflight risks, as well as considering a package of incentives to encourage SpaceX to locate at the Brownsville, Texas location. Public records showed that the total land area that SpaceX then owned through Dogleg Park LLC was roughly 37 acres (150,000 m2). An attorney with expertise on such situations referred to the timeframe given[clarification needed][70] by SpaceX for homeowners to consider their purchase offer as "aggressive". A SpaceX prototype launched to roughly 40,000 feet, flipped itself around in midair and then landed vertically but hard, and in a ball of flames, in South Texas on Wednesday afternoon. “Mars, here we come! Check out [ SpaceX] - Boca Chica Launch Site. The Texas launch location was projected in the 2013 draft EIS to include a 20 acres (81,000 m2) vertical launch area and a 12.2 acres (49,000 m2) area for a launch control center and a launch pad directly adjacent to the eastern terminus of Texas State Highway 4. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk indicated in 2014 that he expected "commercial astronauts, private astronauts, to be departing from South Texas,"[6] and he foresaw launching spacecraft to Mars from there.[7]. The giant spacecraft… "[43] Lighter construction of fencing and temporary buildings in the control center area had begun in 2014.[39][44]. SpaceX has stated that they have a good flight path available for the launching of satellites on trajectories toward the commercially valuable geosynchronous orbit. (Photo by Olivier DOULIERY / SPACEX / AFP) /, Photo: OLIVIER DOULIERY, Contributor / SPACEX/AFP via Getty Images, This SpaceX video frame grab image shows SpaceX's Starship SN8 prototype after exploded right next to its landing pad at the company's Boca Chica, Texas facility during an attempted high-altitude launch test on December 9, 2020. By March 2020, there were over 500 people employed at the facility, with most of the work force involved in 24/7 production operations for the second-generation SpaceX launch vehicle, Starship. aka BocaChicaMaria or BCM. [64], The launch site has been the main production and testing site of the Starship/Super Heavy system. First SpaceX enthusiasts group based on a launch site *UNOFFICIAL**Not affiliated with SpaceX-*!! "[18] In September 2012, it became clear that Georgia and Puerto Rico were also interested in pursuing the new SpaceX commercial spaceport facility. SpaceX routinely performs a flip maneuver, which positions the rocket to return to Earth and land vertically, when launching its Falcon 9 rocket. [13][46] In January 2016, following additional soil testing that revealed foundation problems, SpaceX indicated they were not planning to complete construction until 2017, and the first launch from Boca Chica was not expected until late 2018. "Elon Musk's upcoming Starship presentation to mark 12 months of rapid progress", "SpaceX working to stabilize land at rocket launch site", "SpaceX may turn to other launch pads when rocket flights resume", "SpaceX seeks to accelerate Falcon 9 production and launch rates this year", "SpaceX construction causing problems for surrounding residents", "Progress slow at SpaceX's planned spaceport", "SpaceX moving two giant antennas to Boca Chica", "NASA Closes Historic Antenna Station That Tracked Every Space Shuttle Launch", "SpaceX launch facility goes green, will have solar panel field", "Starhopper successfully conducts debut Boca Chica Hop", "SpaceX job posts confirm Starship's Super Heavy booster will be built in Texas", "Inside Elon Musk's plan to build one Starship a week—and settle Mars", "SpaceX Plans To Send People From Brownsville To Mars in Order To Save Mankind", "SpaceX considering SSTO Starship launches from Pad 39A", "Starhopper conducts Raptor Static Fire tests", "SpaceX Starship : Texas Prototype(s) Thread 2 : Photos and Updates", "https://twitter.com/julia_bergeron/status/1285924792273711106", "Texas border town to become next Cape Canaveral", "SpaceX Squares Off Against Homeowners Near Texas Launch Facility", "To reach Mars, SpaceX is trying to buy up a tiny Texas community", "City moves forward with viewing facility", SpaceX gets preliminary FAA nod for South Texas launch site, Lone Star State Bets Heavily on a Space Economy, Commercial Orbital Transportation Services, SpaceX Mars transportation infrastructure, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=SpaceX_South_Texas_launch_site&oldid=995300659, Pages with non-numeric formatnum arguments, Articles with dead external links from November 2017, Articles with permanently dead external links, All Wikipedia articles written in American English, Articles containing potentially dated statements from 2014, All articles containing potentially dated statements, Articles containing potentially dated statements from 2019, Wikipedia articles in need of updating from December 2019, All Wikipedia articles in need of updating, Wikipedia articles needing clarification from December 2019, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Chantilly, Houston, Seattle, Washington DC, This page was last edited on 20 December 2020, at 08:32. By September 2019, the site had been "transformed into an operational launch site – outfitted with the ground support equipment needed to support test flights of the methane-fueled Starship vehicles. Through 2019 and 2020, additional prototype flight vehicles are being built at the facility for higher-altitude tests in 2020. Astronomy This 4K live view from South Padre Island, in southern Texas, is towards the SpaceX Starship construction and testing site at Boca Chica Launch Pad. The draft EIS identified three parcels of land—total of 12.4 acres (5.0 ha)—that would notionally be used for the control center. SpaceX conducted a groundbreaking ceremony on the new launch facility in September 2014,[12][6] and soil preparation began in October 2015. The Starhopper prototype was also the platform for the first flight tests of the full-flow staged combustion methalox Raptor engine, where the hopper vehicle was flight tested with a single engine in July/August 2019,[63] but could be fitted with up to three engines to facilitate engine-out tolerance testing. In May 2013, SpaceX purchased an additional three parcels, adding another 1 acre (4,000 m2),[28] plus four more lots with a total of 1.9 acres (7,700 m2) in July 2013, making a total of 12 SpaceX-purchased lots. SpaceX, the aerospace company founded by Elon Musk, runs around-the-clock operations at the SpaceX South Texas Launch Facility in Boca Chica Beach where they are developing the Starship spacecraft. SpaceX Starship prototype takes second hop in South Texas, https://www.facebook.com/AndreaCLeinfelder/, With Axiom, Houston Spaceport gets commercial space station tenant, NASA receives $23 billion in budget including funds for returning to the moon, Members of U.S. Space Force to be called Guardians, Texas AG Paxton urged White House to revoke Harris County COVID relief funds over mail ballots, Latest COVID-19 projections suggest Houston could be nation's next hot spot, Grand Prize Bar employee assaulted for asking customer to wear mask, Virus cases trigger rollback of restrictions in Galveston, Brazoria, Chambers and Liberty counties, Ken Paxton’s beefed-up 2020 voter fraud unit closed 16 minor cases, all in Harris County, Elderly Texans and those with chronic conditions get priority in next COVID vaccine phase, Here are 5 things you should know about the $900 billion COVID stimulus relief package. Based on Cameron County, Texas road closures. Four shifts are working 24/7—in 12-hour shifts with 4 days on then 3 off followed by 3 days on and 4 off—to enable continuous Starship manufacturing with workers and equipment specialized to each task of serial Starship production. This is the site of the launch site itself while the launch control facility is planned two miles west in the Mars Crossing subdivision. - SpaceX came within seconds of attempting to launch the latest prototype of its next-generation Starship rocket, until an engine issue stopped the company short of liftoff on December 8, 2020. Under the 2013 Texas plan, beach closures would be allowed but were not expected to exceed a maximum of 15 hours per closure date, with no more than three scheduled space flights between the Saturday prior to Memorial Day and Labor Day, unless the Texas GLO approves. [32] (Credit: SpaceX webcast) SpaceX Boca Chica Launch Site Scoping Period FAA Announcement. 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