Spacex starship, the world’s largest rocket was set to fly to space for the first time last week. It didn’t get there. Everything after clearing the tower was icing on the cake. Most companies wouldn’t call a fiery explosion, icing on the cake.
But for SpaceX crashes like this are part of a unique learning process that Ceo Elon Musk expects will one day bring humans to Mars and help fuel Nase’s ambition to return to the moon. Here’s why starship is so important to the future of space travel and what the latest test means for the rocket’s future.
Why Starship is important to the future of space travelMusk has been talking about building a spaceship to go to Mars for years. Here he is in 2016. This is intended to carry huge numbers of people, ultimately, millions of tons of cargo to Mars.
In 2017, he shared the plans for a vehicle that would be both massive and reusable and would eventually become a starship. And I can’t think of anything more exciting than going out there and being among the stars as a community. This is what we’ve been working toward and hoping for.
This is Mike Massimino, a former NASA astronaut who worked on the Hubble space telescope, the ability to go and do these things to go to the moon to go to MARS to explore even further. This is the kind of spacecraft that can make that happen.
Starships started to take shape in 2019.1st came the star hopper, a smaller craft used to test engines that would be used on starships. Musk unveiled an early version of the spacecraft in September of that year.
This is, this is I think the most inspiring thing that I’ve ever seen early prototypes of the spacecraft faced challenges and to be reusable, it needed to be able to land which it couldn’t do in flight tests in 2020.
SpaceX’s trial and error method: why crashes aren’t necessarily bad for the company but for SpaceX, space crashes weren’t necessarily a bad thing. They’re part of the trial-and-error method that SpaceX regularly uses to test new spacecraft. SpaceX’s philosophy is more like failing fast but learning faster.
NASA is more like we can’t afford to have anything explode while we’re learning, we have to, we have to be ready to go. It’s taxpayers’ dollars. We got to get it right on March 3rd.2021 Starship marked a major accomplishment launching about six miles up and making a landing but the rocket exploded just after the cameras stopped broadcasting.
But just a few months later, a prototype landed and didn’t explode on the live video. We are down, the starship has landed. Starship has taken on an increasingly large role at Spacex and not just literally, it’s central to the company’s future. Business strategy.
Executives have said they want to start launching the spacecraft regularly with Starlink satellites and it signed a pair of contracts with NASA to develop a variant of starship that would carry astronauts to the moon. Those deals are worth over $4 billion.
It’s certainly what NASA is counting on that’s going to get people back to the moon and land on the moon. So it’s a key piece of what NASA is trying to do. By 2021. The rocket’s design was coming into focus. It was made up of two parts, the bottom, a 226 ft tall booster called super heavy, which was designed to push the 164 ft tall spacecraft that may one-day carry dozens of passengers out of earth’s atmosphere altogether.
Starship stands at almost 400 ft tall. In comparison. SpaceX’s next largest rocket is just 229 ft tall. This is the biggest rocket ever made and there’s a reason for that, the further you want to go, the more payload you want to take, and the more things you want to take, the bigger the rocket you need.
Starship’s first test flight using both Super Heavy and the main spacecraft: what happened? By the end of 202,2, SpaceX was preparing for a key test starship’s first test flight using both parts of the rocket. Musk said the year before that there were a lot of risks associated with the first launch.
So I would not say that it is likely to be success successful, but I think we’ll make a lot of progress and he still wasn’t optimistic the day before its initial scheduled launch. This is not like a, you know, some sort of train leaving the station at precisely like, you know, nine oh three AM or something like that.
The first attempt set for April 17th was postponed due to a frozen valve. Then three days later, SpaceX was ready for lift-off. The plan was for Starship to take off from the launch pad in Texas.
The booster would then separate and fall into the Gulf of Mexico as the spacecraft engines fired and took it on an a90-minute flight, then it would come down and crash in the Pacific Ocean, but that’s not what happened shortly after the starship launched at 9 33 AMEastern.A graphic on the live stream indicated that three engines weren’t working with more appearing to go out before the blast.
It reached more than 1300 MPH before it started to spin. It does appear to be spinning the shuttle that was intended to separate from the booster here didn’t we should have had separation by no?. This does not appear to be a nominal situation.
After climbing 24 miles, the rocket began to tumble back to earth and around four minutes into its flightstarship exploded.SpaceX said a flight termination system was triggered on both the spacecraft and the booster.
When you have a failure, you learn a lot from that failure. So I think they planned to test to the point of failure. And then let’s learn from what we can from that failure. So it never happens again. Minutes after the explosion, the company tweeted that success comes from what we learn.
Starship is grounded for now as the Federal Aviation Administration is overseeing an investigation into what happened during the flight. An agency spokesperson said, but Musk said they’d be testing in a couple of months. This is a huge step if they can get this right.
If they can figure out how to do this with, with such a big rocket. I think it’s gonna be not just taking people to the moon, but it’s gonna help us to explore the rest of our solar system and maybe on some day. So I’m very excited. I wish I could go. I don’t think I’m going anywhere, but, I’m excited for the people that will be going.
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