SpaceX Starship SN11 rocket explodes after test launch

Why does Starship look so bad?

On March 30, SpaceX tested its latest Starship prototype, the SN11. But due to a bug, SpaceX had to destroy it in mid-air. This is the SN11 story. Starship is a project launched by SpaceX to transport humans to the Moon and Mars.

SpaceX continues to test SpaceX Starship SN11, a combination of both the Starship spacecraft and the Super Heavy rocket, against a backdrop of global turmoil from the Covid-19.

Image Source: NASA
Image Source: NASA

When the Starship is completed, it will be the most powerful launch vehicle in the world. Starship can carry up to 100 metric tons. That is 100,000 kilograms. The date of the final Starship is a few years away, but SpaceX, which is already getting ready, will begin testing in 2012, but the first test flight will take place on April 5, 2019 with Starhopper.

Its latest story is the SpaceX Starship SN11 test. With the success of the SN8, SN9 and SN10, this will go down in SpaceX history as the fourth Starship test flight to fly more than 10 km, making some fundamental changes.

The Starship SN10 began its journey on March 4, 2021 at 04.44 Sri Lanka time with a launch pad at the SpaceX Starbase in Boca Chica, Texas. Three Raptor engines, used as liquid methane fuel and as liquid oxygen oxidizer, carried the SN11 to a height of 50 meters (160 feet). This raptor engine is about 6 times as powerful as a Boeing 747 plane engine. The first step in the 10 km journey was to test the performance of these Raptor engines. The three engines were cut-off one by one and the engine was completely cut-off after the SN11 reached its maximum height.

Those who had not seen the old Starship test flights on this engine shutdown thought that the engines had malfunctioned. Called by names like Skydiving / Belly Flop, it was a wonderful thing to look forward to. With a successful Skydiving, I had a small problem when I turned on the engine thinking of getting back on the launch pad.

All 3 Raptor engines need to be restarted to reposition the horizontal Starship vertically and land. When repositioning the horizontal Starship vertically, SpaceX decided to create two more small tanks inside the Starship for this purpose, as the movement of the fuel inside the main fuel tanks would be troublesome to use. They are called header tanks. However, the engine 2 did not work properly as there was no fuel flow from the header tanks at the same pressure as expected.

At the same time (5 minutes 49 seconds after the liftoff) the SpaceX live stream stopped, but in the other live streams we saw pieces of the SN11 crash to the ground. Although the exact cause has not yet been determined, many speculate that SN11 was deliberately blown up by SpaceX as it began to go off-track. SpaceX later announced that it was only able to go up to 8 km this time due to a small glitch while the engine was going up.

How much does the SpaceX Starship SN11 cost?

Elon Musk’s SpaceX is now worth $ 74 billion after raising more capital last week, and strong demand for shares means the company’s two ambitious projects will raise that estimate even further.

The company’s valuation increased 60% from its previous capital accumulation six months ago. A familiar source told CNBC that in the latest round of fundraising for SpaceX, the company received $ 6 billion in investments in three days.

Chris Quilty, founder of Quilty Analytics, explained that the investor demand comes from his Starship and Starlink projects, which he described as “two Manhattan side projects.” Quilty runs a store and investment company focused on the satellite communications division, which he founded after 20 years of covering the aerospace industry by Raymond James.

The astronaut is the next generation rocket, more powerful than the Saturn V rockets that astronauts take to the moon. Starlink is a global satellite network of thousands of satellites that SpaceX has begun to use to bring high-speed Internet to its customers.

Top Wall Street and industry analysts spoke to CNBC this week to explain the enthusiasm for SpaceX’s StarShip and StarLink programs.

“This assessment is based on a vision of what SpaceX can accomplish in the future,” Bryce CEO and chief space technology officer Carissa Cristensen told CNBC. “The commercial launch market is measured in billions of dollars, not tens of thousands or hundreds of billions, so its valuation is very high. So you should pay attention to Starlink. “

3 Comments
  1. Curtis B. Kingsbury says

    Ascent phase, transition to horizontal & control during free fall were good.

  2. Michael Noonan says

    A (relatively) small CH4 leak led to fire on engine 2 & fried part of avionics, causing hard start attempting landing burn in CH4 turbopump.

  3. Ricardo Morrison says

    See how lucky our cameras were at #SN11’s launch in 4K slow mo with insane audio…

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