While SpaceX continues to wait for the “green light” from the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for the second test flight of its powerful Super Heavy rocket, the company decided not to waste time and conducted a ground test launch of the upper stage of the rocket, called Starship.
This impressive test launch was captured on video, showing how one of the six powerful Raptor Starship engines worked for six seconds. This event took place at the SpaceX facility located in Boca Chica, Texas. It is worth noting that in this very place, in April, the first launches of the Super Heavy (or Booster 9) and Starship launch vehicles took place. Unfortunately, the April launch ended in failure – the rocket exploded a few minutes after launch.
SpaceX is very much expecting a second launch, which looks like a step into the future. And this is despite the failure of the previous attempt. Now Super Heavy is one of the most powerful rockets that have ever been built, with a launch thrust of approximately 7,000 tons, which is almost twice the capacity of NASA’s Space Launch System rocket, which made its first flight to the Moon in November last year.
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) October 21, 2023
It should be noted that Starship, the upper stage of this powerful rocket, is designed for multiple uses. This makes its Raptor engines key to carrying out a controlled descent from orbit, even if it returns to Earth or lands on another celestial body. For example, NASA intends to use a modified version of Starship to deliver two astronauts to the Moon, and this can happen as early as 2025. However, many other tests and preparatory work must be successfully completed to achieve this goal.
After an unsuccessful test flight that occurred in April, the FAA required SpaceX to carry out 63 corrective measures before the second test flight. Despite the fact that SpaceX states that it is ready to launch, official permission for the flight has not yet been received from the FAA. Thus, it remains to wait for the next chapter in the fascinating history of the development of space research and travel to other planets.
Earlier we reported on how the new Starship became the highest rocket in history.
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