Elon Musk shows off SpaceX's Tintin inspired 'Starship'

Telegraph 11 Jan 2019 10:33

It may look like something straight out of Buck Rogers in the 25th Century or Tintin's Destination Moon but, according to Elon Musk, the pictures he tweeted of his latest SpaceX creation are very much real.

Musk, the CEO of SpaceX and electric car-maker Tesla, revealed that assembly of the 'Starship Hopper' test-flight rocket was complete and that the pictures of the shimmering, stainless steel construction were 'not a rendering'.

The Tintin comparison is not an accident. In September of last year, SpaceX revealed the new design of the 'Big Falcon Rocket', now simply know as 'Starship', saying "I love the Tintin rocket design, so I kind of wanted to bias it towards that."

"If in doubt," Musk added. "Go with Tintin."

True to his word, the 120-foot-tall hopper is a tubular, pointy-topped rocket with three rear 'fins' that serve as landing pads. It is an important building block of the controversial entrepreneur's grand plan to land on and eventually colonise Mars, but this version of the Starship Hopper is not yet ready for space flight.

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