The engine test marked the next major step forward in the development of the Starship system — comprised of the Super Heavy booster and a spacecraft — that is designed to ferry people and large amounts of cargo into deep space, including missions to the moon and Mars.
SpaceX just attempted to ignite all 33 engines in a test fire of its gargantuan Super Heavy rocket booster. The trial marks the company’s first “static fire” test for what is expected to be the most powerful launch vehicle ever built.
The Super Heavy booster started its engines for less than 10 seconds while still strapped to the launchpad. The blast sent up a massive plume of smoke and dust as birds scattered around the launch site.
Only 31 engines were lit, as team turned off 1 engine just before start & 1 stopped itself, But still enough engines to reach orbit!
SpaceX conducted the test fire without the Starship spacecraft mounted on top of the booster.
Development of Starship has been the sole focus of SpaceX’s activities at a facility called Starbase, outside the city of Brownsville, Texas, where Thursday’s test occurred.
The company — and the public — has been waiting for the orbital flight test for well over a year, as Musk at one point suggested on his Twitter feed that the test would occur as early as July 2021.
It should be noted that SpaceX is still awaiting a license from the Federal Aviation Administration to move forward with an orbital flight test.