SpaceX's Starship SN8 rocket explodes on landing during test launch

SpaceX's Starship SN8 rocket explodes on landing during test launch

The Starship exploded on impact.

In a high-altitude test of its Raptor engine, SpaceX's interplanetary rocket in-development Starship, crashed in a fiery explosion during the test launch in Texas on Wednesday, 9 December.

There were some bugs to work out before that could happen, evident in the number of exploded spacecraft and capsules that the company has reported, each one giving them new information that would lead to an eventual successful launch.

Nevertheless, this still marks a major leap forward for SpaceX's forthcoming legacy vehicle - created to eventually take humans to Mars, for the first time.

Musk said the rocket's "fuel header tank pressure was low" when landing, "touchdown speed will be high" following the crash. "Awesome test", "nice work", SpaceX commented after the hard landing yesterday. Mars, here we come!' During the live stream, the dispatch showed the on-screen message "Amazing TEST. Congratulations STARSHIP TEAM!" But even with the explosive landing, SpaceX gathered all of the data needed to consider this a substantial step forward.

While many in the space industry are skeptical of Starship's prospects, NASA has invested $135 million in the vehicle as part of its Artemis program to return astronauts to the moon.

"Big congrats to the whole SpaceX team". SpaceX already has two more prototypes, SN9 and SN10, effectively ready to go for follow-up tests. However, it was the highest flight yet for the Starship, which Musk says could carry people to the Red Planet. The company has made steady progress over the past year on Starship prototypes at its factory in Boca Chica, Texas.

Though Musk apparently views the test as successful, the procedure wasn't without some glitches even before its approximate 5:40 p.m. ET takeoff time. As reported by The Guardian, the spacecraft was taking part in a test flight that meant to send the Starship rocket to 12,500 metres in altitude using, for the first time, three of SpaceX's latest Raptor engines.

Starship, a rocket system standing 394-feet (120.09 m) tall when mated with its super-heavy first-stage booster, is created to carry satellites, humans and 100 tons of cargo to the moon and Mars.

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