Among so many impressive projects of Spacex, Starship is the most daring. And while it has evolved by leaps and bounds over the years, it still has a long way to go. The program depends on several key pieces to be successful, beyond the proper functioning of the Starship ship itself and the Super Heavy rocket that will propel it into space. Among so many is Mechazilla, the tower of launch and catch of which we now had a close look thanks to his own Elon musk.
In recent days the CEO of SpaceX shared a video with his followers on Twitter in which the structure is seen from the air, at its base in Boca Chica, Texas. The clip is short but allows you to appreciate a shot taken with a drone; The businessman has not given further details in the publication, but it is known that this tower will fulfill a transcendental role to streamline the Starship consecutive take-off procedure.
It is no coincidence, then, that Elon Musk is interested in his millions of followers seeing the progress of Mechazilla. Anyway, there is still a lot of work and a few (and exhaustive) tests to see it in full operation.
Keep in mind that SpaceX’s Super Heavy rocket does not have landing legs. This saves weight and consequently reduces fuel consumption. But beyond the benefits that this entails, it has also raised the need to devise an alternative solution that is not easy to implement. That’s where Mechazilla comes in in action with its multi-functional capabilities; not only allows the launch of the Starship, but also Capture the Super Heavy rocket in mid-air during its descent.
Mechazilla, the multipurpose tower that plays a key role in the success of the Starship
In the short video shared by Elon Musk you can see the tower with the mechanical arms that will catch the SpaceX rockets in the air. Consider that those giant “robotic clamps” were mounted to the Mechazilla frame last October. It still remains to know when we can see them in operation, but it would not be strange for the company to intend to carry out the first tests in the coming months.
In August 2021 the account Erc X shared on Twitter a clip with a render of the possible operation of the tower for the Starship that received the approval of Elon Musk. Although the businessman indicated that both the booster Super Heavy as the arms would move faster, remarked that the vision of the video was quite accurate to what is expected as a final result in real life. He also mentioned that Mechazilla will also catch the Starship during its descent and that the mechanism would allow reduce the waiting time between one launch and another to less than an hour.
Let us remember that the Starship it has not yet been able to make its first orbital test flightas SpaceX has not received the corresponding rating for environmental reasons. Elon Musk also issued a warning late last year about the need to fix some problems in the production of Raptor engines, as they could put the company at risk of bankruptcy. But beyond that, the CEO of Tesla has been optimistic about the future, and has ensured that he could take the first humans to Mars in no more than 10 years.