Starship prototype rocket SN15 stands on the company's launchpad in Boca Chica, Texas. SpaceX
Elon Musk's SpaceX is "shooting for July" to launch the first orbital spaceflight of its Starship rocket, company president Gwynne Shotwell said Friday.
"I'm hoping we make it, but we all know that this is difficult," Shotwell said, speaking at the National Space Society's virtual International Space Development conference.
"We are really on the cusp of flying that system, or at least attempting the first orbital flight of that system, really in the very near term," Shotwell added.
SpaceX has conducted multiple short test flights of Starship prototypes over the past year, but reaching orbit represents the next step in testing the rocket. The company in May revealed its plan for the flight , which would launch from the company's facility in Texas and aim to splash down off the coast of Hawaii.