February 7, 2019 Launch of a test raptor engine by Elon Musk
Credit: Elon Musk / SpaceX / Twitter
SpaceX's latest engine test flame has reached the power level required for the company's next round rocket design, said Elon Musk, CEO on Twitter.
"Raptor has achieved the level of power required for Starship & Super Heavy." He rode on Twitter on February 7, four days later. Share a photo First test of the flight preparation engine
Raptor has achieved the power levels required for Starship & Super Heavy. pic.twitter.com/NcqnAVWc35
– Elon Musk (Elon Musk) February 7, 2019
The Raptor engine is designed to use the spacecraft currently known as Starship as part of a rocket assembly, now known as Super Heavy (formerly BFR). The first Raptor test fires were in September 2016, with the company aiming for an unexplored Mars launch in 2018.
These three Raptor engines are built into the spacecraft hopper and are under construction in Texas, and SpaceX begins testing rocket technology in practice.
– Elon Musk (Elon Musk) February 11, 2019
Eventually SpaceX plans to assemble 31 Raptor engines into Super Heavy rockets, and Starship has 7 Raptors. The engine is mixed with liquid methane and liquid oxygen and is fueled and is about twice as powerful as the current Merlin engine on the company's Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy engines.