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GO Ms. Chief

GO Ms. Chief arriving at Port Canaveral - Kyle Montgomery

GO Ms. Chief – often shortened to Ms. Chief – is one of two fairing recovery ships chartered by SpaceX. Ms. Chief is constructed near identically to twin Ms. Tree. Both ships are fast, highly maneuverable vessels that were originally designed for oil rig crew transport in the Gulf of Mexico. The name ‘Ms. Chief’ is a pun of the word ‘Mischief’.

Vital Statistics

Owner: SEACOR Marine

Operator: Guice Offshore

Year Built: 2014

IMO: 9744453

Length: 62.5m

Width: 10.4m

Joined SpaceX Fleet: 2019

Full Specification Sheet.

SpaceX has been working on its fairing recovery program since 2016. In 2017, SpaceX charted Ms. Tree and installed a large net onto it. Ms. Tree would then try to position herself underneath a falling fairing and catch it in the net before it hit the water. It took until mid-2019 for the program to yield a successful catch. Following this success, in August 2019 SpaceX charted Ms. Chief – a ship that was near identical to Ms. Tree.

During recovery operations, two recovery ships are required to be able to catch both fairing halves because the halves descend at the same time in different locations. Prior to Ms. Chief, Ms. Tree would try to catch one fairing half and then go hunting for the other, which would hopefully be floating on the ocean surface nearby.

Ms. Chief Arm Installation - Greg Scott

Ms. Chief had a difficult introduction to mission operations. During her debut mission in November 2019, the vessel encountered heavy seas and was forced to abandon the recovery attempt because engineers were concerned about the structural integrity of the net system. On her first full mission – JCSAT-18 – the vessel suffered some minor damage to her net structure and was taken out of service for a few weeks whilst repairs were made.

Ms. Chief returns from a mission with a fairing recovered from the water (Under blue tarp) - Kyle Montgomery

Ms. Chief has made a handful of attempts at catching a fairing half. The ship caught a fairing half for the first time during the ANASIS-II mission on July 20th, 2020. 

Missions

MissionRole
Starlink V1 L14Fairing Recovery
Starlink V1 L13Fairing Recovery
Starlink V1 L12Fairing Recovery
Starlink V1 L11Fairing Recovery
SAOCOM 1BFairing Recovery
Starlink V1 L10Fairing Recovery
Starlink V1 L9Fairing Recovery
ANASIS-IIFairing Recovery
GPS III SV03Fairing Recovery
Starlink V1 L8Fairing Recovery
Starlink V1 L7Fairing Recovery
Starlink V1 L6Fairing Recovery
Starlink V1 L5Fairing Recovery
Starlink V1 L4Fairing Recovery
JCSAT-18 / Kacific-1Fairing Recovery
Starlink V1 L2Fairing Recovery

For the outcome of each mission, click here.