WATCH: SpaceX Rocket Explodes Minutes After Launch
The SpaceX Starship lifts off from the launchpad during a flight test from Starbase in Boca Chica, Texas, on April 20, 2023. - The rocket successfully blasted off at 8:33 am Central Time (1333 GMT). The Starship capsule had been scheduled to separate from the first-stage rocket booster three minutes into the flight but separation failed to occur and the rocket blew up. (Photo by Patrick T. Fallon / AFP via Getty Images)
Patrick T. Fallon / AFP via Getty Images

SpaceX’s new rocket exploded minutes after leaving the launch pad on Thursday, sending the fiery remnants hurtling back to Earth.

The rocket, nearly 400 feet long, was planned to take off from its base in the southern tip of Texas and fly almost entirely around the world. That trip was cut short, though, after the rocket failed to separate from its booster minutes after launch.

“As of right now, we are awaiting stage separation where the Starship should separate from the super-heavy booster,” a female commentator can be heard saying just before the 4-minute mark in a video of the launch that can be viewed below.

The announcers watching the launch then began to grow concerned about the rocket’s failure to separate.

“Right now, it looks like we saw the start of the flip, but, obviously, from what we are seeing from the ground cameras, the entire Starship stack continues to rotate. We should have had separation by now. Obviously, this does not appear to be a nominal situation,” a male announcer says.

“Yeah, it does appear to be spinning,” the other announcer said, “but I do want to remind everyone that everything after clearing the tower was icing on the cake.” The rocket exploded as she finished the sentence.

The rocket was supposed to take off, separate from its booster, speed off to the east, and circle the globe before crashing into the Pacific Ocean near Hawaii, according to the Associated Press.

Thursday’s rocket launch was the second attempt this week to get Starship off the ground. A planned Monday launch was scrapped because of a frozen booster valve.


The outcome of Thursday’s launch was not entirely unexpected. SpaceX founder and chief executive Elon Musk said prior to the launch that “there’s a million ways this rocket could fail.” Starship was not carrying any people or satellites on board for the launch.

SpaceX put out at statement over Twitter after the launch, joking that the rocket suffered a “rapid unscheduled disassembly” before the booster could be separated.

“With a test like this, success comes from what we learn, and today’s test will help us improve Starship’s reliability as SpaceX seeks to make life multi-planetary,” SpaceX said.

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  WATCH: SpaceX Rocket Explodes Minutes After Launch