SpaceX's uncrewed Starship rocket burst into flames Thursday just minutes after launching -- but Elon Musk and his space company are celebrating the test flight.
"With a test like this, success comes from what we learn, and today's test will help us improve Starship's reliability as SpaceX seeks to make life multi-planetary," SpaceX tweeted.
Congratulations to the entire SpaceX team on an exciting first integrated flight test of Starship!— SpaceX (@SpaceX) April 20, 2023
Musk tweeted, "Learned a lot for next test launch in a few months."
Here's the moment the rocket spun out of control and burst into flames.
SpaceX said the cause of the rocket mishap was a "rapid unscheduled disassembly before stage separation."
As if the flight test was not exciting enough, Starship experienced a rapid unscheduled disassembly before stage separation— SpaceX (@SpaceX) April 20, 2023
This test flight has been a long time coming. Even though Starship failed to achieve orbit, SpaceX is celebrating because the launch provided the space company with new data to improve future Starship launches.
Recall, Musk has given 50-50 odds of the spacecraft reaching orbit on its debut.
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The Starship spacecraft atop its Super Heavy rocket has failed to achieve orbit.
Space blog NASASpaceFlight's commentators stated that the flight termination system was activated.
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The Starship spacecraft atop its Super Heavy rocket has lifted off from the SpaceX Starbase in Boca Chica Village, Texas.
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Elon Musk's SpaceX is preparing for the second time this week to launch the Starship spacecraft atop its Super Heavy rocket. The company has been working non-stop since the first shot at the test flight was scrubbed on Monday due to a frozen valve.
The launch window for the nearly 400-foot (120-meter) spacecraft to blast off from SpaceX Starbase in Boca Chica Village, Texas, opens at 0828 CT (0928 ET). This attempt was halted around the 10-minute mark on Monday due to a frozen pressurization valve that could not be actuated remotely.
Getting Starship and the Super Heavy rocket off the ground for the first time would be a huge milestone for Musk's rocket company, which would play a big role in future space exploration missions.
Under the flight plan, the Super Heavy rocket will boost Starship toward space and, after separation, attempt a controlled splash down into the Gulf of Mexico. Starship will then complete a near full lap of the planet, reentering Earth's atmosphere near the Hawaiian island of Kauai.
Watch the live event here.
If the flight is successful, the Starship system would immediately become the most powerful launch vehicle ever.
Musk has given 50-50 odds of the spacecraft reaching orbit on its debut.