SpaceX manages to land the SuperHeavy booster and the Starship spacecraft for the first time

SpaceX achieved this Thursday a new milestone in the history of space exploration after achieving that the propellant SuperHeavy perform a soft landing in the sea after separating from the ship Starship; and that it could complete re-entry into the atmosphere and splash down, despite suffering some damage to at least the thermal protection tiles of one of the flaps -high lift fins-, as seen in the retransmission of the flight from the ship. A few minutes before 4:00 p.m., SpaceX confirmed the successful completion of test flight of two-stage megarocket Starship. This was the fourth time to try and the first to succeed. All previous attempts had ended with the destruction of the rocket for different reasons.

Starship manages to return to EarthA. CruzThe reason

The soft landing of SuperHeavy was one of the two main objectives of the flight of StarShip, the gigantic rocket –121 meters high adding the propellant and the ship – developed by Elon Musk's company that POT will be used to reach the Moon with the program Artemis. More than 10 minutes after takeoff, which finally took place at 2:50 p.m., Spanish peninsular time, and when SuperHeavy had already successfully landed, The broadcast has been interrupted for more than 20 minutes. The signal has returned after waiting, but has been interrupted intermittently again during the re-entry of the rocket's second stage into the atmosphere. However, that has not prevented the landing of Starship from being seen.

The second objective was to make Starship survived re-entry into the Earth's atmosphere at a speed of 27,000 km/hsomething that he did not achieve in the third test flight carried out in March, and achieve “a controlled entry of Starship.” In the last test, the ship lost its ability to its orientation and position after re-entry.

Although the Starship project is to have a rocket with its two stages reusablein this test flight, as in the previous ones, its recovery will not be carried out and both stages will be allowed they sink in the sea.

During the re-entry phase it has been seen how one of the ship's flaps that entered the camera angle lost part of its thermal protection and, apparently, part of the flap itself. It was in this phase that the retransmission was interrupted on several occasions, but SpaceX continued to receive the speed and altitude data. In the last moments and despite the difficulty of vision, the FLPAs have maneuvered to correct and stabilize Starship's position before landing in the Indian Ocean. The success exceeds SpaceX's expectations, which had established that Starship would pass the reentry phase and, although damaged, has managed to complete the flight.

“Despite the loss of many tokens and a damaged flap, Starship managed a soft landing in the ocean!” Elon Musk noted in X after the completion of the flight.