SpaceX’s Starship Lost Shortly After Launch of Second Test Flight.

SpaceX’s Starship failed its test flight this morning when the automated flight termination system triggered, and engineers lost contact with the craft about 10 minutes into its journey. This marks the company’s second attempt at sending a Starship on a near-orbital trip, a 90-minute voyage that would have gone almost around the world. An initial test flight also failed in April, exploding four minutes after liftoff and flinging debris throughout the surrounding area.

As before, today’s launch took place at SpaceX’s Starbase facility in Boca Chica, Texas. But this time, all of the 33 Raptor engines appeared to ignite properly, and the Starship’s stage separation from the Super Heavy booster worked more or less as planned. The vehicle survived max q, or the point in its ascent when it’s under the most pressure from the atmosphere and its own velocity. About three minutes after launch, the Starship successfully separated from the Super Heavy booster, after which the booster exploded, something SpaceX officials typically refer to with the euphemism “rapid unscheduled disassembly,” or RUD.

But before Starship could reach orbit, SpaceX mission control lost contact with it and stopped receiving data. At about 12 minutes into the flight, the automated flight termination system triggered—aborting the flight and making the second stage undergo RUD, too.

Source: www.wired.com


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