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SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said his company is considering plans to turn part of NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida into a new location for its Starship rocket.
The space technology company has conducted some tests from its Texas location but is considering the addition of the new location as Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations have slowed approvals to launch the rockets from its location in the Lone Star State.
“It would obviously set us back for quite some time,” Musk said regarding another review by the FAA, according to the Wall Street Journal. The new change “would have to shift our priorities” to the NASA location in Florida.
Elon Musk said SpaceX is ready to use a Florida location to test the massive rocket it has been developing if flight-safety regulators require an additional environmental review of a company facility in Texas https://t.co/lqM5gZ1nVw
— The Wall Street Journal (@WSJ) February 12, 2022
“We don’t have a ton of insight into where things stand with the FAA,” Musk said regarding the current FAA plan, according to Space News. “We have gotten sort of a rough indication that there may be an approval in March, but that’s all we know.”
The plan was expected to be completed in December but was later changed to the end of February.
If the report requires a more extended environmental impact statement, Musk plans to look to Florida to continue his launch plans. “It would obviously set us back for quite some time because an EIS takes a lot longer than an EA, so we would have to shift our priorities to Cape Kennedy,” he said in the report.
“I guess our worst-case scenario is that we would be delayed for six to eight months to build up the Cape launch tower and launch from there,” he added.
Despite the delays, Musk stated, “Optimistically, toward the end of next year. I would be surprised if it is longer than two years for doing the refilling.”
“Musk said that his biggest challenge was on refilling oxygen aboard the ship, rather than fuel as it needed 3.5 times more liquid oxygen,” The Daily Mail reported. As The Daily Wire previously reported:
SpaceX is attempting to gain a launch license from the FAA, which is considering giving approval to launch Starship out of Boca Chica, Texas. “The agency is responsible for ensuring that launches to orbit do not pose a hazard to uninvolved people or property,” The Verge noted.
Musk stated, “We don’t have a ton of insight into the way things stand with the FAA. We have gotten sort of a rough indication that there may be an approval in March.”
“The FAA cleared SpaceX to launch out of Boca Chica back in 2014, even prepping a full environment impact statement, or EIS, to detail how the launch site would affect the surrounding area and wildlife refuge. But that approval was decided back when SpaceX planned to launch its smaller Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets from the area,” The Verge added.
Musk has also continued to speak out on political issues in recent weeks. Sharing a satire post from the Babylon Bee, he tweeted last week that the national debt is much worse than publicly noted.
“True national debt, including unfunded entitlements, is at least $60 trillion — roughly three times the size of the entire US economy. Something has got to give,” Musk wrote.
True national debt, including unfunded entitlements, is at least $60 trillion – roughly three times the size of the entire US economy. Something has got to give.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) February 11, 2022
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