A prototype of a gigantic rocket with which the private space company SpaceX intends to reach Mars exploded on Wednesday during landing during flight tests in Texas, United States.
The unmanned rocket was a model known as the Starship, almost 50 meters long and capable of carrying up to 100 tons of cargo. It is intended to put people and cargo in orbit around the Earth and SpaceX ambitions for the vehicle to travel one day to the Moon and Mars.
The Starship was launched from SpaceX’s base in Boca Chica, Texas, and ascended about 12 kilometers, before returning to the starting point, where it was supposed to land. However, when touching land, the rocket exploded.
The owner of SpaceX, the billionaire Elon Musk, explained on Twitter that during the descent “the pressure of the fuel tank was low”, which will have caused the “landing speed to be high”. Despite the outcome, Elon Musk posted a winning message on the social network after the explosion: “Mars, here we go!”
Musk’s aerospace company is known for its aggressive strategy for rapid aircraft development. If the SpaceX has had several explosions on its experimental flights, it has also managed recently US space agency contracts (NASA) to carry out refueling missions from the International Space Station (ISS). The most recent mission arrived on Monday at the ISS with a capsule Dragon.