Starship is a reusable rocket designed by SpaceX for long duration space flight. Development of the rocket was announced by SpaceX founder Elon Musk in 2017 .Musk announced that it would be designed to help fulfill SpaceX’s mission to colonize Mars. The prototype of the rocket was then referred to by Musk as the “BFR". In November 2018, SpaceX announced the rocket would be called Starship . Starship went through its initial testing phase in April 2019. Further orbital tests are planned for 2020 with prototype Mk1, which was unveiled in September. SpaceX plans to launch its first cargo payload via Starship in 2021. Starship is being developed in McGregor and Cameron County, Texas, as well as Space Coast, Florida .
The two stage design consists of the first booster stage “SuperHeavy” and the second stage “Starship”. Both stages of Starship are made of stainless steel. Stainless steel, while heavier than the carbon fiber commonly used in rocket construction, has a higher heat resistance which is desirable for reentry and is cheaper to manufacture. Many commentators have made notice of the 1950's sci-fi influenced design of the rocket.
Stage Superheavy is the booster stage that stands 68 meteres and and has a 9 meter diameter. It is comprised of 37 SpaceX Raptor engines fuelled by liquid methane and liquid oxygen . The 72 MN of thrust are able to propel Starship into Earth’s orbit, to the Moon, to Mars, or beyond. It has a fuel capacity of 3300 tons. The liftoff mass of SuperHeavy is 3 million kg.
Stage Starship stands 50 meters high and has a diameter 9 meters. Starship is the reusable payload carrying second stage. It is configurable for both crew and cargo. The front passenger payload section can hold up to 100 passengers or 100 tons of cargo. Starship is equipped with 6 Raptor engines, and has a 1200 ton fuel capacity to propel it after the booster stage is complete.