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Federal Aviation Administration completes Starship safety review

The safety review covers the portions of launch operations that affect public safety.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has successfully concluded its comprehensive safety review of SpaceX‘s Starship Super Heavy license evaluation. The assessment primarily focused on how a Starship launch could impact public health and property, encompassing SpaceX’s safety organisation, system safety processes, flight safety analysis, and quantitative risk criteria for launch, reentry, and vehicle disposal, according to an FAA spokesperson.

However, the FAA is still working on an environmental review. The FAA is currently engaged in an environmental assessment in collaboration with the US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) under the Endangered Species Act. This assessment, initiated on October 19, aims to evaluate potential environmental impacts, including SpaceX’s new water deluge system, which was implemented following a rocket booster incident.

SpaceX’s Starship, one of the most powerful rockets in history, experienced a dramatic midair explosion during its maiden test flight in April. Despite this setback, SpaceX has asserted its readiness for a second orbital flight test. Bill Gerstenmaier, SpaceX’s VP of build and flight reliability, testified to lawmakers that Starship has been prepared for its next flight test for over a month.