Elon Musk has a much higher belief that Starship will successfully launch after the company overhauled the spacecraft.
During a Twitter Spaces session with Bloomberg’s Ashlee Vance, Musk said this:
So I think the probability of the next flight working — or getting to orbit — is much higher than the last one. Maybe it’s 60%; it depends on how well we do at stage separation.
Per Musk, SpaceX made over 1,000 changes to Starship since its last test ended in an explosion.
These changes include delaying when the spacecraft separates from its boosters during launch. Due to the build, Starship needs to use hot staging. Hot staging is where the Starship engines ignite and warm up while the Super Heavy Booster is still active. This is not a new process and was used by the Soviets and Russians in their spaceship design. However, SpaceX is now delaying the separation between Starship and the Super Heavy Booster later to give the Starship engines a chance to warm up properly.
Musk also confirmed that SpaceX’s investment in Starship is approaching $3 billion this year. The rocket is the cornerstone for the company to launch its next-generation Starlink constellational and eventually go into deep space.
Musk declined to discuss a potential Starlink initial public offering or other details around specific SpaceX work.