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Starship & stitches: A look at SpaceX's Super Heavy test firing and the history of space mission patches

An image of Super Heavy booster's static fire test.
Super Heavy Booster 7 completed a full duration static fire test of 31 Raptor engines on February 9, 2023.

A critical test of SpaceX’s Super Heavy booster is pushing its Starship spacecraft one step closer to an orbital flight, and eventually to the moon.

Last week the company fired 31 of the booster's 33 engines while the vehicle was bolted down to the ground -- a first for SpaceX and a crucial test of the rocket and its launch pad.

It lays the groundwork for an orbital test soon and eventually will take the first of NASA’s Artemis astronauts to the lunar surface. We'll hear from NASASpaceflight.com's Chris Gebhardt about the test and what's ahead for SpaceX's Starship program.

Then, from robotic missions to human space flights, there’s one critical thing every mission must have -- a patch.

It’s been a long-standing tradition in spaceflight that started decades ago. Each patch is unique to its mission and is adored by both mission participants and civilian collectors. Historian and CollectSPACE.com's editor and founder Robert Pearlman joins the show to talk about the origins of the mission patch.

Brendan Byrne is WMFE's Assistant News Director, managing the day-to-day operations of the WMFE newsroom, editing daily news stories, and managing WMFE's internship program.<br/><br/>Byrne also hosts WMFE's weekly radio show and podcast "Are We There Yet?" which explores human space exploration.
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