SpaceX Starship Designed for Relaunch Within 1 Hour

Elon Musk indicated that the SpaceX Starship is designed to be relaunched within one hour of landing. SpaceX Starship could have three launches in one day.

Elon also described the 20-millisecond latency for the Starlink satellites which is good enough for competitive gaming.

SOURCE – spaceXcentric

59 thoughts on “SpaceX Starship Designed for Relaunch Within 1 Hour”

  1. I don’t see it. What is high priority but not valuable so you can put on a rocket? On top of that it will be loud coming down and it might be a bit risky landing it near a city.

  2. I agree that mining would be one area especially platinum metals.

    Space telescopes could be another. If cheap enough, every university could have their own.

    Every country could get their own set of communication and weather satellites

    Large set of earth resource and mapping satellites.

  3. No sure if space provides a more productive environment to produce antivirals and antibodies. But if it did one shipload would be enough to last the world for a year. Starship is about bulk. Years ago I used to read about growing large pure crystals in space. Even if we did that Starship would still be too much capacity.

  4. So we have the trucks and we have the fuel stations but what’s the cargo. What are we delivering and where are we delivering it to.

    While I understand that Elon wants to go the Mars, I just don’t think enough of us shares his enthusiasm.

  5. Fuel. If SpaceX creates a fuel depot in LEO, then long-term, reusable space vehicles become a reality. He charges a fee for fill-ups and other companies can then build and use space vehicles for multiple trips.
    Depot and space craft assembly plant. SpaceX can economically haul up parts and facilities to build spacecraft assembly and repair facilities. Now it becomes economical to assemble and then to repair and re-utilize spacecraft for a variety of purposes (like cleaning up orbital debris, moving supplies to/from Moon, lagrange points, Mars, outer planets, inner planets, etc.
    Tourism. For sure, enough rich people will want the experience to build a few hotels/centers to accommodate their desire to spend $$$$.

  6. Just recently I saw a joke that Elon talks they way he does (stopping to think a lot etc), because he’s trying to avoid saying anything that would mess up the timeline.

    edit: On the other hand, you’d expect much more accurate time estimates for his own projects, if he was a time traveler. Unless he’s trying to mask it.

  7. We will go to Space, like O’Neill sez, not planets. In a few years, rockets will be like commercial jets. If we build the habs, we will be able to get there. There are (normally!) a lot of people in jets, but they keep coming back down.

  8. Agreed – I’ve thought for as long as I recall since my first engineering class, that the fundamentals of the engineering approach need to be instilled in kids as early as possible. It serves almost everyone (some people never really jibe with it) well for the rest of their life, especially given the general trend of the world being increasingly tech-oriented/dependent.

  9. I completely agree. My single sentence opinion for years if not decades has been that we need cheap access to orbit and immediately after that a self-sufficient (as close to) industrial footprint up there.

    Everything else follows from that.

    Solar back to Earth is for now questionable at best, as far as I’ve seen.

    edit- my only other real snag on floating habs is the monstrous orbital debris should the inevitable (bc humans are involved) happen.

  10. Elon is a time traveler. I believe this because his predictions and timings are so eerily accurate. And I think that he doesn’t know it himself but gets these flashes of insights/memories that lead him to making decisions that gives him the halo of a prophet.

  11. According to many scientists, if everyone on Earth was vegan(yes, it’s possible, you get more protein from plants, than meat anyways. And B12 is formed from bacteria), we could sustain the entire Earth’s human population with only 1/3rd of the land area we currently use.

    Now, Mars is too far away, the Moon is much closer, so it would be a good target if we need to evacuate the Earth. It’s much smaller than Earth, but even that’s fine, since we can be far more efficient with our land usage. More people in high-rises, and multi-storey farms.

    The main issue is launch cadence. If SpaceX builds 100 Starship rockets, each can launch once per hour, that’s 100×24=2400 launches per day. Assuming we can fit 100 people on Each rocket, we can move 240,000 people per day. In one year, that’s 87.6 million people. 89x less than the Earths population, per year.
    That’s assuming we didn’t need any other resources for them to survive. It would take 89 years.

    Now, we could reduce this time if there were more rockets and/or larger ones. An 18-meter Starship could carry 400 people at once, that’s 350.4 million people per year. Only 22 years would be needed to evacuate the Earth.

  12. Planets are protected buffered environments – space leaves you vulnerable – it’s the furthest thing from what we evolved in. Radiation and objects hurtling through space unimpeded. Doesn’t take much to fail before things go drastically wrong. Planets are naturally safer – we need to terraform them.

  13. Maybe there needs to be an annual Fail-Fast-Learn-Fast contest for contestants to demonstrate how to do this for whatever given problem. Learning as a competitive sport?

  14. My point was that even this worst case scenario, while bad, is still pretty benign in the big scheme of things. Only ~5 years setback in terms of population, plus whatever the economic setback would be. So maybe 10 years total? All the plans can mostly continue as usual, nearly 95% of the population survives, various lessons learned, etc.

    More realistically, I think there’s a good chance this will peak around 100-200K confirmed cases in the worst-affected countries, and less elsewhere (per country). With ~200 countries, that’d be ~10-50 million confirmed cases in total, and less than 5 million dead. 100 times less severe than my worst case projection. (Though that’s still a lot of deaths. I’m not trying to play that down.)

  15. I suppose that’s why Musk is making noises about manufacturing the fuel on site using solar power, to make the system carbon neutral.

    From an economic/engineering position, that’s utter madness, but making noises about doing that is probably smart politics, unfortunately.

  16. As long as the cargo isn’t fragile that might make some sense. I do have one question though, wouldn’t rockets have a larger carbon footprint than a cargo jet???

  17. Please remember the worst case scenario requires the world leaders to totally screw the pooch on managing this outbreak. I know the UK and US “leadership” are attempting to do that but calmer headers seem to prevail elsewhere.

  18. I’m still waiting for a commercially viable industry for space (real space OR other planets).

    Otherwise we are just replicating the Norse settlements in Greenland. Semi able to support themselves, but as soon as the going gets rough they’ll be abandoned because there is no driving motivation.

    And at least they had furs and ivory.

    Here at least Dan’s push for solar power has a sensible motivation. Power is a real product, with a real market. And there is only 5 or 6 orders of magnitude between what sort of microwave power transmission has actually be proven and what you’d need to set up a paying business. And we have actual, existing, space solar power plants producing kW. (Eg. ISS solar array makes 90 kW)

    In terms of Asteroid mining we’ve got a current proven return rate of what? Micrograms?

  19. Well…
    Speculation time:

    If I was a radical, disruptive US president (which I’m not, to be clear).

    And I thought that NASA was a bunch of stick-in-the-mud, help the big corporations, never take any risks, go-nowhere types that were so ossified (and maybe corrupted) that they would never adopt new technology even if it cut space access costs by 3 orders of magnitude.

    Then I might just decide to completely bypass them and set up a new space agency.

    The way to do this, given existing government structure, would be as a military branch. Maybe a whole new branch called the Star Corps, or the Space Marines, or something cool like that (TBD).

    They’d get spiffy new uniforms.

    And then I’d have a word in the ear of the guy making new tech, low cost, launch vehicles. And I’d tell him that given the cost was so low I could promise to buy say… 100 new space launch vehicles at his estimated $5m each. Thus giving me my instant space force for such a low price that I could finance it personally if necessary. (Worked for Teddy Roosevelt!)

    Given the sloth-like reactions of the bureaucracy, the new Star Fleet could have 3 launches a day for a year and establish military bases out as far as Uranus before the current space agencies have created a powerpoint to outline the issues in scheduling a meeting to discuss why this was against the rules.

    More likely though, Musk was calculating things using Mars time again. Or maybe his 3 launches per day was using the Mercury calendar?

  20. The context is that you have either atmo or gravity and you’re safer than space.

    Agreed on lower gravity biohazard but then remove that criteria and we’re back to all cons and no pros for floating habs.

  21. The habs generate debris for nearby habs and vent you into space. Instead of atmo and gravity.

    To compare like with like, neither the moon nor Mars have atmosphere either. (OK, Mars has 0.006 times Earth atmospheric pressure. You wouldn’t notice the difference if your potato tent blows a seal.)
    And while they do have some gravity, it remains to be proven that it is sufficient for long term human health.

  22. The only reasons I’m aware of that a Starship needs no crew, while a cargo plane does are:
    -1- There are a lot more people on the ground arranging matters like flight diversion etc. to make takeoff and landing simple enough for a computer to do.
    -2- The acceptable crash rate is much, much higher than an aeroplane.

    If cargo planes adopted these approaches they could operate with no crew too. Whether that would turn out to be cheaper per flight is a different question.

  23. The habs generate debris for nearby habs and vent you into space. Instead of atmo and gravity. The Earth has thousands of years of proven survivability. Habs will not have that for a few decades.
    Let’s be real.

    I’ll read that book. I doubt it has any magic insights about getting anywhere near the mass and logistics and tech and social/political backing required to realize anything like the illustrations; in the next 25-50 years without a game changing paradigm shift.

  24. “There’s nowhere near the tech to make those un-fragile enough to not get wiped out for many reasons.” all at one time, like could happen on Earth?
    “easier to survive catastrophic failures on a surface rather than in space.” I’ll take hundreds of habs over any planet getting smacked.
    “Floating habs are not going to be survivable for the foreseeable future and that means it’s a better investment to R&D everything on whatever surface.” an assumption. Have you read The High frontier?

  25. James Bowery hit the nail on the head with OFW. It has 42 benefits to current trans and supersonic flight. Even could be reach higher to build the 1 hour from any airport to any other in any weather condition. My patent from 2016 is the way to it.

  26. There’s nowhere near the tech to make those un-fragile enough to not get wiped out for many reasons.

    It’s just not going to happen unless someone like Musk forces it to happen, e.g. in a cheap place like one of the Earth-Moon L points so that it’s within short range for rescue, support, etc. While the tech for ISRU etc are made reliable enough to compare with a bunker on Mars or Moon.
    And even then it’s much easier to survive catastrophic failures on a surface rather than in space.

    Floating habs are not going to be survivable for the foreseeable future and that means it’s a better investment to R&D everything on whatever surface.
    Unless another major paradigm shift happens. E.G. curing aging, after which we much more quickly get to a cultural shift to long term and wider thinking such as floating habs and other things that are supposed to last as long as inhabitants that live hundreds of years.

  27. You have to consider ELEO and even lower LEO such as ISS. A rotating version of ISS seems almost trivial. Grow from there, as O’Neill sez. We have wasted 40 years!

  28. No one is doing it. We have no industrial footprint anywhere off the surface. Before such a mfg capacity could translate into free floating habs, there’d need to be many major sci/tech milestones passed and arguably more difficult still, there’s the cultural/mindset obstacle of enough people/organisations (few as it might be) to overcome the planetary status quo.

    Free floating habs are basically the furthest item on our foreseeable BEO chronology, which leaves out FTL, Dyson spheres, etc

  29. Point to point terrestrial high priority cargo. LA to Sydney or Shanghai in an hour or so. If Starships are cheaper to build than cargo airliners, need no crew, use relatively cheap Methane and LOX (mostly LOX by mass) propellant they’ll be profitable serving Fedex, DHL demand for Very fast shipping more or less as cheap as cargo jets.

  30. Moon, or asteroid mining, no doubt. Tourism, giant telescopes on Farside…..
    I am expecting a new SiH4/O2 rocket engine…they are going to make something
    really big on the Moon…

  31. He’s said, not even as an admission/confession, but explicitly characterizing it, that his time targets are aspirational. Much like his approach in looking at e.g. manufacturing a car or rocket and seeing that the cost of bare material components is only so high before labor etc, and that that cost is the real target to work towards, and that failing fast is as good a method as any of the old aerospace methods.

  32. It kills mainly the old, so he still has a chance to make it out alive. I am not so sure about myself though. But I refuse to spend whatever time I have left in hiding and hoarding toilet paper.

  33. Thanks for trying to make some sense out of that comment. Does James Bowry think we are all specialists in OAFSP (Obscure And Forgotten Space Projects) ?

  34. Even jokes are opportunity for (somewhat) serious discussion. Regardless of the levels of tension.

    My intention was actually optimistic: it’s not an extinction level event, life will go on, it’s not too late to settle space, in the long run we’ll come out stronger than we went in.

  35. No one knows that OFW means “oblique flying wing” rather than “obscure f***in’ what?”. It took me a solid 10 minutes to find anything relevant. BDB is “big dumb booster”, and anybody who doesn’t know about the legendary Truax should study the early ’60s Sea Dragon giant rocket proposal — built in a shipyard, under $200/kg to orbit in today’s money. (Remembered by Musk with the “Dragon” name for his capsule.)

  36. I would love to know what the cargo will be that justifies launching a starship three times a day. Moon metals, space tourism, space manufacturing?

  37. I ran into trouble lobbying for R. T. Jones to get funding for the OFW. The scramjet folks at Ames were dismissive — probably because they were pissed off at me for trying to over-ride their local authority with an earmark for supersonic wind tunnel testing of the OFW. Even though the OFW would have a much higher capital utilization rate than the 747, the scramjet folks claimed they could do even better. Of course, I was also working with Truax to get funding for the suborbital version of the BDB at the time. Truax was claiming he could beat the scramjet folks’ capital utilization rate by an even bigger margin if he could get refueling and reflight times down.

  38. It is an old O’Neill thought experiment to calculate how long it would take to completely vacate the Earth, assuming commercial jets could, and did, deliver their passengers to Space, and return empty. All we need is settlements to go to! Of course, Mars is way too small to matter in this regard.

  39. “Everyone was convinced that we would have regular travel to the moon and have the first outpost on Mars by 2000.” Yes, most not in O’Neill’s class at that glorious day had no idea. Now that we (well, some) know that Space is the place, not planets, we can make rational plans.

  40. Good plan! We can ride Musk rockets to O’Neill settlements. That has been he plan all along, if not distracted by Mars.

  41. The more or less worst case scenario is ~0.5 billion dead. Based on:
    — 7.8 billion current global population.
    — 70% infection, according to some experts’ projections.
    — 10% death rate, based on Italy as an example (currently approaching 7.2% and rising, but their population is relatively older).
    — Assuming no major worsening of the virus itself.

    That would be an unprecedented loss of life event, but it would only set us back about 5 years in terms of population. That’s not a major setback for colonization plans.

    If anything, that would stress the need to “spread our eggs” and improve our defenses. So we may see an increase in funds and effort towards space development, as well as towards new anti-viral tools, disease control protocols, etc. There will be a lot of lessons learned, for sure, and hopefully enough application of those lessons.

    On the other hand, the economic cost of this pandemic could set us back a few years, on top of the setback from lost lives.

  42. “I think Elon’s narrative is intentionally exaggerated.”

    The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.

  43. He does exaggerate regarding timing. However he does deliver on his plans eventually and only a couple of years later than he hoped. Even regarding timing he has more recently delivered on schedule or even faster than his outrageous, impossible schedules. I am talking about Model Y and Giga factory Shanghai, truly astounding.
    I was seven years old when we did the moon landing. It was super rapid development, very exciting. Everyone was convinced that we would have regular travel to the moon and have the first outpost on Mars by 2000. So it was a big disappointment to see everything cut back in the 70’s and no one going back to the moon since, or even once leaving low Earth orbit!
    What is going on with Elon Musk and even Jeff Bezos is like nothing I remember from the Apollo times. And since these activities are happening with private commercial companies with commercially viable business plans is doubly exciting.
    Everything Elon proposes seems totally outrageous, but he never opens his mouth unless he actually sees a technologically and commercially viable path to making it happen. And then he makes it happen. Again, truly amazing and gives me hope that we can move on past the crippling stagnation in much of our society today.

  44. Elon stuffed up his timing. The intention was to have the Mars colony self sufficient and isolated BEFORE the deadly plague swept the face of the Earth.

  45. Too much declarations, too much hype every day.. I think Elon’s narrative is intentionally exaggerated..

  46. i can tell Elon is a hacker… he builds rocket ships exactly the same way hackers write computer code…

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