spacexthe aerospace company created by Elon Musksuspended this Monday the first test flight Starshipthe most powerful rocket ever built and designed to send astronauts to the Moon and Mars, among other space destinations.
The takeoff was postponed and canceled minutes before the scheduled time due to a pressurization problem in the drive stage, according to the company itself. Through your account Twitterthe South African tycoon commented that a valve on the ship seemed to be frozenwhich forced the postponement of the event that was to be held from the SpaceX spaceport in Boca Chica, in the extreme south of the state of Texas.
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“A booster valve appears to be frozen., so unless it starts working soon, there will be no launch today,” Musk said with 10 minutes to go until liftoff. “We learned a lot, now we will unload the booster and try again in a few days,” he added in his message.
“We anticipate a minimum of 48 hours before we can try this test flight again,” a SpaceX employee said in a live video posted on official communication channels. In any case, the dates for the next tests during this week had already been set in advance, something that the company had considered.
There are a million ways this rocket can fail. Let’s be very careful and if we see anything that worries us, we will postpone it”, the CEO of the social network had announced in the middle of a SpaceX event Twitter.
In this sense, he stressed that “the first launch of a very complex and gigantic rocket” means a “too risky” flight. The takeoff had been confirmed by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the highest aeronautical authority in the United States, to specify the first integral test flight of the ship that measures about 120 meters high and weighs about 5 million kilograms.
What was the mission?
NASA chose the ship Starship to take astronauts to the Moon at the end of 2025, in a mission named Artemis III, for the first time since the Apollo program ended in 1972. With its height, Starship It belongs to the category of super-heavy launchers, capable of transporting more than 100 tons of payload to orbit.
The car has a large first stage propellantcalled super heavy, which have never flown in combination. However, several suborbital flight trials have already been carried out.
According to the description that SpaceX itself made about the mission on Monday, it was that the 33 methane liquid oxygen engines rapacious rocket reinforcement 7 go out 169 seconds into flight and separate from Starship three seconds later.
The rocket would restart some of its engines to be taken back to Boca Chica, and then it would sink about 20 miles offshore in the Gulf of Mexico; all this in about eight minutes after launch. While, the six raptor engines from the upper stage of Starship they were to ignite after 177 seconds of flight, continuing the vehicle’s eastward journey.
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The spacecraft was not going to make a complete orbit of the Earth, but it was planned to reach what is called “orbital speed”, for a low Earth orbit, around 28,100 kilometers per hour, at an altitude of approximately 240 kilometers. “If it reaches orbit, that will be a huge successMusk had said this Sunday.
Finally, according to what was stipulated, the Starship was going to perform a re-entry test at high speed in the earth’s atmosphere. The splashdown that would occur a hundred kilometers off the coast of Hawaii was scheduled to occur 90 minutes after takeoff from the base in Texas.
SpaceX hopes to put a ship into orbit Starship and replenish it with another so that it can continue its journey to Mars or beyond. Musk clarified that the goal is to make the “sea humanity a multiplanetary civilization“and that the ship can be reusable to reduce the cost of missions per flight.
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