The fifth was the right one!
On Wednesday May 5, after several attempts that ended in explosions, one of the prototypes of SpaceX's future Starship rocket (finally) successfully landed.
Dubbed SN15 (Serial Number 15), the rocket took off from the Boca Chica base in Texas, shortly before midnight (French time), for a six-minute flight.
Powered by three Raptor engines - each shutting down in sequence before the vehicle reached its maximum altitude of 10 km - SN15 then flipped over to a horizontal position in the air before descending vertically back to Earth on a track located very close to the launch pad.
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"Nominal Starship Landing!"
", Immediately tweeted the boss of SpaceX, Elon Musk, delighted that the maneuver took place without incident, or explosions ... Only downside all the same: flames were seen at the base of the rocket shortly after its landing and were quickly extinguished by water cannons.
By making giant strides towards a new space conquest, SpaceX is betting more than ever on its future Starship rocket to one day go to Mars.
In the long term, it will be composed, in addition to the manned vessel, of a first stage called Super Heavy.
The whole will measure 120 m in height and will be able to carry 100 tons on board.
Until that day, Starship has already been chosen by NASA to bring the next American astronauts to the Moon as part of the American Artemis program.