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There are evidences that the current rocket by SpaceX, Falcon 9 booster can be ferried on long distances on the regular road network. Long distance road ferry movements seems to be necessary because of the use of several launching pads, east coast and west coast, and a quite geographically dispersed industrial footprint. The size of the rocket seems to allow for passing under bridges and tunnels.

But how will this work with the future massive vehicle that is Starship? Crawlers will most probably be used on short distance, but is the system designed to avoid long distance road ferrying?

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  • $\begingroup$ Your linked image shows only a single Falcon 9 booster on a heavy load truck. The first and second stage of Starship may be transported separately. Unfortunately first stages are a lot heavier than the respective second stages. $\endgroup$ – Uwe Jan 23 at 15:05
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    $\begingroup$ Since earth-to-earth is something the starship's capable of, why would you need to transport it? Just have it fly itself to wherever you want to park it 🙂 $\endgroup$ – Dragongeek Jan 23 at 16:55
  • $\begingroup$ I imagine Starship and its booster will travel by barge if necessary to move them a distance, much like SLS booster. I believe the construction sites both have barge access. Might not get them to Vandenberg; perhaps point to point as suggested in another comment will suffice. $\endgroup$ – antlersoft Jan 23 at 17:22
  • $\begingroup$ As far as I remember, the welding tecniques used to build Starship steel frame can be used outdoors. So, Starship can probably be built directly on site (you just need to carry there engines or other components which are smaller). Also, once built on a launch site, it could reach other launch sites as it is designed for earth to earth transport as already mentioned. $\endgroup$ – BlueCoder Jan 23 at 17:26
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The original set of build sites are all near water or ports:

  • Boca Chica, Texas
  • Cocoa Beach, Florida
  • Port of LA, California (started, stopped, restarted)

For short distance moves, at the Texas site, they are currently being moved on Roll Lift transports brought in for the move as needed.

The plan in Florida was to Roll Lift it to the waterway, across a highway (they started burying power wires that would be in the way of the move) to the water, then barge it over to the launch site, using the basin from which the Shuttle SRB's were recovered. Then Roll Lift again to the launch site.

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