Elon Musk has renamed the BFR, the spaceship that he hopes will carry people to Mars.

It should now be often known as Starship, he stated, although the underside half could have a separate identify.

The BFR identify had all the time been barely controversial and unusual: whereas SpaceX formally insisted it was brief for “Large Falcon Rocket”, the F actually appeared to face for one thing a little bit extra specific.

Mr Musk introduced its new identify on Twitter, giving little context for the change and no rationalization of why it had occurred.

“Renaming BFR to Starship,” he wrote within the first publish, in a characteristically brief however momentous publish. “Technically, two elements: Starship is the spaceship/higher stage & Tremendous Heavy is the rocket booster wanted to flee Earth’s deep gravity effectively (not wanted for different planets or moons),” a follow-up learn.

The spaceship – no matter its identify – is SpaceX’s huge hope for the way forward for house journey. The corporate hopes that it’ll ultimately exchange not solely the prevailing modes of deep house transport however its current rockets and spacecraft, too.

Finally, SpaceX hopes to make use of the Starship to hold individuals to Mars, the place they’ll reside, and presumably even past. Within the shorter time period, the corporate is aiming for a 2023 mission that can see a Japanese billionaire pay for a bunch of house vacationers to make a journey across the Moon – if the Starship, which can value round $5 billion to construct – is prepared in time.

Starship is definitely the spacecraft’s fourth identify. Earlier than it was often known as the BFR, the spaceship was often known as the Interplanetary Transport System or ITS – and earlier than that it was known as the Mars Colonial Transporter, or MCT, marking it out as a part of Mr Musk’s plan to ship individuals to take over Mars.

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