At what time and where to watch the launch of SpaceX's Starship megarocket

Starship It is now ready to fly again. After having received this Tuesday the authorization of the Federal Aviation AdministrationFAA for its acronym in English, SpaceX has free rein to do take off for the fourth time what is the largest and most powerful rocket ever built. It will do so this Thursday, June 6 from starbase that the company Elon Musk operates in Texas. It will be at dawn there and at 2:00 p.m. in Spain when the launch window will open which will last 2 hours, until 16:00.

The broadcast of the launch can be followed through the SpaceX account on xthe old one Twitter, and from the SpaceX website. It will begin half an hour before the launch window opens, at 13:30, Spanish peninsular time. There will not be through your channel Youtube, but it can also be followed on said platform through specialized channels such as NASASpaceflight. When streaming is enabled, this article will be updated so it can also be followed here.

The objectives of the fourth Starship flight

This fourth unmanned flight seeks “demonstrate the ability to return and reuse Starship and Super Heavy. The main objectives will be to execute a soft landing and splashdown in the Gulf of Mexico with the Super Heavy booster and achieve a controlled entry of Starship”, explains SpaceX on its website.

Expectation is high and not only because of the spectacle of seeing a two-stage megarocket ascend and 121 meters high, but because of the importance of this ship for the future of space exploration. It is with which POT wants to take its astronauts to Moon on the mission ARTEMIS III and later also to Mars. And there is, of course, the intrigue of whether we will see the ship explode again.

The 3 failed Starship attempts

The fourth takeoff of Starship follows the one carried out last March, in which the gigantic rocket, composed of the Super Heavy booster -70 meters- and the Starship -51-, was close to completing its first flight. The two first attemptscarried out in April and November 2023, ended with Starship exploding 4 and 8 minutes later of takeoff, respectively. In the first case, after failing the separation maneuver and starting to spin uncontrollably, SpaceX activated the self-destruct mechanism. On the second attempt the separation was achieved, but several of the booster's 33 Raptor engines failed while a fire on Starship activated the flight termination system which caused the spaceship to explode.

The third attempt has been the most successful to date, but not completely. SpaceX lost contact with Super Heavy when it was at an altitude of 462 meters over the Gulf of Mexico, after failures in several of the Raptor engines that prevented it from maneuvering to make a soft landing in the water. Starship flew for about an hour, but in the coastal phase of the flight she began to lose the ability to control your orientation and positionwhich caused it to experience much greater heating than expected and after which SpaceX lost contact.

Despite the abrupt end, the third flight managed to meet objectives such as performing Starship's first re-entry from space, the first opening and closing of Starship's payload door in space and a successful fuel transfer demonstration, among others. After each test flight, SpaceX has carried out Various changes to Starship to prevent the problems from recurring and these have had to be approved by the FAA in order to receive authorization for the flight.