Despite Elon Musk has called the world’s heaviest rocket too light to reach orbit, his space company’s colossal rocket completed its second integrated test flight in mid-November.
Hi there! I wanted to let you know that NASA has had to delay its Artemis II and III missions due to some technical challenges, including some related to SpaceX’s Starship. As you may know, the Starship is a colossal flagship rocket from Elon Musk’s space firm that aims to take humans to Mars and beyond. In mid-November, the rocket soared to the edge of space in its second integrated test flight from Boca Chica, Texas. The launch was flawless, which was a great improvement from the first attempt that saw the rocket crash into the launch tower. Hey there! Just wanted to let you know that the Starship has successfully separated from the Super Heavy booster! The booster provided the initial thrust and the Starship has now crossed the Kármán line, which is the boundary between Earth’s atmosphere and outer space.
A bittersweet success
However, the historic flight had its challenges. The Starship and the Super Heavy booster exploded in mid-air shortly after the stage separation, creating spectacular fireballs that lit up the sky. The cause of the mishaps was unclear, and many speculated that the flight termination system, a safety mechanism that destroys the rocket if it deviates from the planned trajectory, was triggered.
Two months later, SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk finally shed some light on what happened during a company update presentation at Starbase, the launch site and production facility for Starship. He revealed that the world’s heaviest rocket was too light to reach orbit.