Elon Musk’s SpaceX Starship booster rocket explodes in test

Elon Musk’s SpaceX rocket exploded during a test on Monday at the company’s Starbase facility in Texas.

The Super Heavy Booster 7, known as B7, exploded during a spin start test of all 33 Raptor engines onboard–and it was caught on camera in NasaSpaceFlight’s live stream.

The B7 rocket is a prototype of Super Heavy, which is being developed for the first orbital test flight of the Starship deep-space transportation system, which SpaceX intends to launch in the coming months.

It’s made up of two parts: the Super Heavy is the first-stage booster and the Starship is the upper-stage spacecraft. They will be powered by the new Raptor engine–Super Heavy will have 33 and Starship will have six.

Super Heavy booster exploded in a test on Monday when an “engine spin start test” did not go to plan.

Musk explained the explosion: “Cryogenic fuel is an added challenge, as it evaporates to create fuel-air explosion risk in a partially oxygen atmosphere like Earth. That said, we have a lot of sensors to detect this. More later.”

On how much damage was done to the engines, Musk said: “Base of the vehicle seems ok by flashlight. I was just out there about an hour ago. We shut down the pad for the night for safety. Will know more in the morning.”

He later added: “Was just up in the booster propulsion section. Damage appears to be minor, but we need to inspect all the engines. Best to do this in the high bay.”


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