Friday Flyday: Starship SN11 launch plans cancelled for March 24, 25
The window for SpaceX’s Starship SN11 high-altitude test flight has shifted to the right by two days, with launch from Boca Chica, Texas now expected no earlier than (NET) Friday, March 26.The local flight attempt road closure for, Wednesday, March 24 has been canceled, per the Cameron County website for SpaceX notices.
Additional temporary flight restrictions (TFRs) and notices to airmen (NOTAMs) have been filed to accommodate planned windows on Friday and Saturday, shifting the high-altitude flight back from what was earlier in the week thought to be possible as early as Wednesday, March 24. It is expected that the associated road closures will follow suit, along with the eventual withdrawal of the Wednesday temporary flight restriction and notice to airmen.
Weather may be playing a factor in these changes, as it is now the stormy spring time in this part of the country; poor visibility and rain are expected in the coming days.
While the Starship flight is delayed and on hold, work continues in earnest at SpaceX’s Boca Chica build site. Booster No. 1 (BN1), a pathfinder for the Super Heavy booster that will one day carry Starships into orbit, has been disconnected from the enormous “tankzilla” crawler crane and Starship SN15 is undergoing mysterious stacking procedures. There are now two different nose cones (with flaps visible) near the production tent, which could well represent SN15. Community speculation is that the one without a tip, currently being stacked on barrel sections, is some kind of pathfinder; the newly visible nosecone may then come to be the actual section used.
Production continues at a steady clip, and more information will be shared as it becomes available for these future test articles and the Starship SN11 flight. In the meantime, please enjoy a throwback to when SN9 and SN10 were sharing time together on the launch pad.
Nicholas D'Alessandro was born and raised in Southwest Florida. The seeds of his interest in Space Exploration were planted when the Shuttle's sonic boom upon re-entry would reverberate through his childhood home even across the state; the knowledge that a real life spacecraft was passing overhead and could have that effect was fascinating to him. A middle school field trip to the Kennedy Space Center cemented that fascination, and with an additional interest in the bleeding edge of automotive technology and Teslas, it was the story of Elon Musk's path to Cape Canaveral with SpaceX that finally led Nicholas to move to the Space Coast and, after joining Spaceflight Insider in 2020, begin documenting the dawning era of commercial spaceflight.