SpaceX’s colossal new rocket disintegrated and crashed into the Gulf of Mexico a few minutes after lifting off on its inaugural test flight on Thursday.
The ambitious mission aimed to send the largest and most potent rocket ever built on a circumnavigational journey around the world from Texas’s southern tip, near the Mexican border, the Associated Press reported.
The 120-meter Starship, carrying no people or satellites, encountered engine trouble as it ascended from the launch pad, and multiple engines were observed not firing.
The rocket was expected to detach from the spacecraft three minutes after launch, but it failed to do so, and the entire vehicle began to tumble and subsequently exploded, plunging into the ocean.
The entire endeavor lasted four minutes, instead of the ideal 90-minute trip around the globe, with a maximum speed of 2,100 kph.
Spectators watched the launch from several miles away on South Padre Island, despite the off-limits Boca Chica Beach launch site, and cheered as the rocket took off with a deafening roar.
There was no immediate comment from SpaceX on the number of engines that failed to ignite or shut down early.
Written by staff