SpaceX has acquired two offshore oil rigs that it is in the process of converting into spaceports for its Mars-bound Starship spacecraft, according to reports.
The rigs, renamed Deimos and Phoibos after the two moons of Mars, cost $3.5 million (£2.6m) each after the previous owner filed for bankruptcy, Spaceflight’s Michael Baylor reported.
The oil rigs were confirmed by aerospace and launch photographer Jack Beyer, who posted photos of their transformation to Twitter on Tuesday.
Work on the rigs is taking place in the Port of Brownsville near SpaceX’s Boca Chica facility in Texas where the Starship craft is being developed.
SpaceX, who did not immediately respond to a request for comment, currently uses drone ships to land its commercial rocket boosters. Tests of its Starship craft involve launching it and landing it on pads at its Texas base.
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk revealed in June last year that the private space company is building “spaceports” for rockets travelling between Earth, the moon and Mars.
The spacecraft facilities could also function as hubs to facilitate rocket travel to different places on Earth.
“Spacex is building floating, superheavy-class spaceports for Mars, moon and hypersonic travel around Earth,” he tweeted at the time.
Read more: yahoo