SpaceX’s Starship: Achieves Orbit and Dives into Earth’s Atmosphere

SpaceX’s starship Hits Milestones: Reaches Orbit & Navigates Earth’s Atmosphere.

On Thursday morning, a next-generation mega rocket lifted off and safely entered orbit following a critical test flight that was intended to show new technologies and procedures that would be critical for Moon and beyond missions in the future.

According to the company, the flight, held on the 22nd anniversary of SpaceX’s founding, was the third and most ambitious test of the rocket. The event was closely watched because the nearly 400-foot-tall booster, known as starship is expected to play a key role in NASA’s return program to the Moon.

The rocket lifted off at 9:25 a.m. ET from SpaceX’s Starbase test site in Boca Chica, Texas. On this trip, They achieved two major milestones compared to previous Starship tests: the spacecraft successfully reached orbit, then re-entered Earth’s atmosphere for the first time after more than 40 minutes.

SpaceX's Starship
SpaceX’s Starship

During their live broadcast of the event, SpaceX officials stated, “This is the furthest and fastest that Starship has ever flown.

However, data shows that the spacecraft was lost while returning to Earth, before it reached the splashdown in the Indian Ocean that SpaceX had expected.

After Thursday’s test flight ended, the Federal Aviation Administration said it was investigating an “accident” involving the Starship vehicle and the rocket’s first stage booster, known as Super Heavy.

“No public injuries or damage to public property have been reported,” the agency said in a statement. “The FAA is monitoring the SpaceX-led accident investigation to ensure that the company complies with its FAA-approved accident investigation plan and other regulatory requirements.”

They need to conclude its investigation and SpaceX will need to take any corrective actions identified by the agency before Starship can fly again. Despite the unwanted ending, SpaceX called it a “phenomenal day”.

The company adjusted the targeted liftoff time Thursday morning, but the Starship launch proceeded smoothly. Approximately three minutes into flight, the Super Heavy first stage booster successfully separated from the upper stage Starship spacecraft.

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