The Mk1 prototype of Starship, SpaceX’s reusable interplanetary spacecraft, which will take people to and from Mars and Moon has exploded during test at Boca Chica Starship Construction and Launch Facility.

The Mk1 prototype of SpaceX’s Starship exploded during test at Boca Chica Starship Construction and Launch Facility

The first prototype of Starship, Starhopper, successfully completed a 150-meter (492 feet) hop/launch on August 27, 2019.

A spokesperson for SpaceX told The Verge that “The purpose of today’s test was to pressurize systems to the max, so the outcome was not completely unexpected. There were no injuries, nor is this a serious setback.”

Starship is 50 meters (164 feet) in height and 9 meters ( 29 ft 6 in ) in diameter. The full Starhopper vehicle is also 9 meters ( 29 ft 6 in) in diameter and was originally 39 meters (128 ft) tall in January 2019. But, Subsequent wind damage to the nose cone of the vehicle resulted in a SpaceX decision to scrap the nose section, and fly the low-velocity hopper tests with no nose cone, resulting in a much shorter test vehicle. Its height was 18 meters (59 feet) during the August 2019 test.

Starship will be SpaceX’s interplanetary spaceship, which will take people to and from Moon, Mars and beyond (according to the American space technologies company).

Super Heavy booster, (previously known as the BFR – Big Falcon Rocket or Big Fragging Rocket) will be the powerhouse behind these two spaceships which launch them into space. Both Starhopper and Starship will be stainless steel.

Planned Starship specifications are (as of November 2019):

  • Crew: ≤ 100
  • Length: 118 m (387 ft 2 in), including Super Heavy booster, a two-stage-to-orbit launch vehicle
  • Diameter: 9 m (29 ft 6 in)
  • Empty mass: 120,000 kg (260,000 lb)
  • Payload to low Earth orbit (LEO): > 150,000 kg (330,000 lb)


M. Özgür Nevres

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