I have exciting news for everyone! On Wednesday, SpaceX launched a starship SN15 prototype rocket for high-altitude flight test which landed successfully back to its position. This is the first time when the company’s starship has landed without any explosion.
Through this successful landing of a starship, Elon Musk is one step closer to his aim of building a fully reusable Mars rocket.
Starship Prototype SN15
Previous Starship prototypes like SN10, SN11, etc are failed during their testing as they explode in the middle of the test, landed roughly that they explode.
Starship Prototype SN15 takes off at SpaceX Boca Chica, Texas launch site which provides all facilities and is owned by SpaceX.
It takes off at 6:24 ET, during its takeoff it rises more than 6 miles for checking its activities. When SN15 reached its highest altitude its 3 raptor engines slowly shut down to start a free-fall back to earth. When SN15 is near the earth 2 engines are reignited to execute a complex movement of a spaceship to reposition vertically to softly land on the earth.
The SN15 uses tiny legs to firmly land on the pad which is not far from its launching pad. Through this landing, it becomes the first surviving prototype. After its landing, a small fire is started near the base of the rocket but it is extinguished a few minutes later.
Design by Starship Prototype
It is designed by SpaceX engineer John Insprucker. During Spaceship launching, it is streaming live and he said in it we are down and the starship has landed. When the fire is started in a rocket then he also said that it is unusual as they are using methane gas.
John Insprucker also designed previous prototypes of rockets which are exploded during their landing.
Elon Musk’s Reaction
After 7 minutes of the successful landing of the starship prototype, he tweeted that the starship landed normally.
Elon Musk also stated that SN15 design has more improvements over last prototypes designs.
Through this successful landing, SpaceX got its approval from NASA to use SpaceX for the first two missions of Moon by around 2024. It is a signal for their approval to use their company as last month Elon Musk company awarded with $2.9 billion.
Now the Starship demonstrates that it can refuel itself in orbit before it goes to the lunar surface. Until now it is not accomplished by a private company. They also have to prove that starship can land normally to the lunar surface as it is rough and dusty.