A public road closure notice has revealed that SpaceX plans to resume testing of its Starship Hopper vehicle in the coming weeks.
Late Tuesday, Cameron County Judge Eddie Treviño Jr. announced that he had ordered the temporary closure of State Highway 4 from Oklahoma Avenue to Boca Chica Beach. The closure has been scheduled for May 28 between 14:00 and 22:00 local time with backup windows on May 29 and May 30.
SpaceX began testing of the Starship Hopper vehicle at their Boca Chica facility during a three-week period in March. Testing included two tethered hops powered by one of the launch provider’s next-generation Raptor engines. Both tests were declared successful by SpaceX.
Over the past few weeks following its first tethered hop tests, crews at Boca Chica have installed additional hardware to the Starship Hopper vehicle including RCS thruster pods. These thruster pods will allow the vehicle to be controlled during its upcoming untethered tests. In the coming weeks leading up to the first untethered test, crews will continue to work on the vehicle including reinstalling the Raptor engine.