SpaceX’s Super Heavy booster, one half of the company’s starship rocket system, had a successful test-firing on Thursday. The engines of the most powerful rocket ever built were ignited for a brief period in a “static fire” test, as 31 of the Super Heavy’s 33 Raptor rocket engines fired for roughly 10 seconds at SpaceX’s facilities in Boca Chica, Texas. Mysterious Spiral in Skies Unveils SpaceX’s Latest Launch.
The Super Heavy’s Fiery Debut
During the test, the rocket, which is almost as tall as a 23-story building, remained clamped down vertically in place. Giant sheets of orange flames erupted from the base of the rocket, and clouds of smoke billowed into the air, as the engines roared to life. When combined with its upper-stage starship spacecraft, the entire vehicle will stand taller than the Statue of Liberty at 394 feet (120 meters) high.
Elon Musk’s Ambitions for the Spaceship
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has ambitious plans for the spaceship, including colonizing Mars. The company will soon attempt to launch the powerful, next-generation rocket for the first time in an uncrewed flight to space, with the test mission lifting off from Texas and landing off the coast of Hawaii. The exact date of the launch has not been confirmed, but SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell stated that it could happen “in the next month or so.”
NASA Chooses the Starship capsule
NASA has selected the starship capsule to ferry its astronauts to the Moon as part of the Artemis 3 mission, set for 2025 at the earliest. The first uncrewed flight is a crucial step towards realizing this goal, and Shotwell emphasized that the primary objective of the test is to not blow up the launch pad.