— SpaceX (@SpaceX) November 18, 2023
SpaceX flew Starship, the most powerful rocket ever built, for the second time ever today – and even though both the Super Heavy booster and the Starship upper stage had to be blown up in mid-air, it was still a huge success for the company best known for taking a rapidly iterative approach to hardware development.
Although the upper stage (which is also called Starship) did not complete the full flight plan, which would’ve seen it glide halfway around the world and splashdown in the Pacific Ocean, the mission had a notable handful of major wins.
The rocket lifted off at 7:03 AM CST from SpaceX’s massive Starship development and launch facilities near Boca Chica, Texas. At liftoff, all 33 Raptor engines on the Super Heavy booster were lit and none went out during the mission, which is a huge improvement from the first launch, which lost around six engines between lift-off and flight.
the automated flgiht termination system on the upper stage appears to have triggered
rapid unscheduled disassembly