New York (The Verge) — SpaceX requests permission to fly new Starship rocket on 12-mile-high test flight trib.al/f3KTpT3.
SpaceX is already planning the next big test flight of its future Starship rocket out of Boca Chica, Texas. As early as March 16th, the company is hoping to fly a test version of the vehicle to 20 kilometers, or 12.4 miles, and then land it upright on solid ground.
The upcoming test is detailed in new paperwork SpaceX filed with the Federal Communications Commission, which provides licensing to aerospace companies that are hoping to fly their vehicles to space. Specifically, the FCC allocates which radio frequencies companies can use to communicate with their vehicles during flight.
SpaceX notes in its filing that it wants special authority to communicate with its Starship rocket while the vehicle flies to an altitude of 12.4 miles or 20 kilometers — nearly halfway to the edge of space. Starship would take off from SpaceX’s test facility at Boca Chica, Texas, and the company would attempt to land the vehicle near the launch site using the rocket’s Raptor engines. SpaceX also plans to send data of the vehicle’s trajectory to both the Air Force and NASA. — Loren Grush/@verge