SpaceX orders residents of Boca Chica Village in Texas to evacuate ahead of a significant test of SpaceX's Mars-bound Starship rocket over the risk of 'pressure event that shatters windows.'
After completing a static fire evaluation of the craft's Raptor engines, the Starship SN15 prototype is set to conduct a high-altitude launch this week from SpaceX's Starbase complex in Boca Chica.
According to The Sun, the Raptor engines on the Starship SN15 prototype must also pass a static fire inspection.
When Will Space Flight Operations Occur?
Residents were alerted in advance that "space flight operations" with "a risk [of having] malfunction would take place on April 21 from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m., according to an alert notice.
In a tweet posted by netizen Mary (@BocaChicaGal), they were told to leave immediately as the windows from their homes might smash.
I have received an “Alert” notice and a road/beach closure has been scheduled from noon - 8 p.m. on Wednesday, April 21. Possible SN15 static fire attempt tomorrow. 🔥🚀🔥@NASASpaceflight pic.twitter.com/5WL17HowDy— Mary (@BocaChicaGal) April 20, 2021
"There is a risk that a malfunction of the SpaceX vehicle during these activities will create an overpressure event that can break windows," the letter stated.
"Therefore, [to] protect Public Health and Safety, it is recommended that you consider temporarily vacating yourself, other occupants, and pets, from the area.
"At a minimum, you must exit your home or structure and be outside of any building on your property when you hear the police sirens, which will be activated at the time of the space flight activity, to avoid or minimize the risk of injury."
For the same period as the Alert notice, Cameron County has issued a temporary closure of public roads surrounding SpaceX's Boca Chica base.
The Independent said SpaceX does not reveal the precise time of its Starship launches because a variety of factors must align at the same time for it to happen.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approval, local road closures, technical preparations, and favorable weather conditions are among them.
Will This Launch Be Different From Previous Launch?
The Starship SN15, like the four designs before it, could launch up to 10 kilometers into the sky.
According to images captured by space enthusiast Carter Goode, starship SN15 rolled out to the launchpad on April 8, just nine days after the previous Starship SN11 flight test.
In the past, SpaceX has had problems with burning rocket designs.
Only one of the four, SN10, made it to the ground without exploding, but it exploded a few minutes later.
Despite the setbacks, SpaceX is pressing ahead with plans to launch the world's first orbital Starship by July. A commercial trip around the Moon is planned for 2023. A $2.89 billion deal with NASA is expected to see humans return to the Moon in 2024 on a Starship craft.
A live stream of the launch will be available a few minutes before the attempt on SpaceX's official YouTube channel and Twitter account.
Check out more news and information on SpaceX on Science Times.