The remains of SN11 (Photo: REUTERS)
The SN11, the SpaceX company’s rocket, which hopes to reach the Moon and support the conquest of Mars, crashed on March 30 in one of the tests carried out by the company at its base in southern Texas. Now, Elon musk give some answers.
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Methane, which is why SpaceX’s SN11 exploded
At the end of March, the spacecraft climbed 10 kilometers when problems began to register and the signal with the controllers was lost. For almost six minutes it was not known where the ship was.
The owner of SpaceX responded via Twitter to a user who asked if he already had new information about what went wrong.
“The ascent phase, the transition to horizontal and the control during the free fall were good. A (relatively) small CH4 leak [es decir, metano] caused a fire in engine 2 and burned part of the avionics, which caused a difficult start in the attempted burned-out landing on the CH4 turbopump. This is being fixed in six ways as of Sunday, ”Musk responded.
Ascent phase, transition to horizontal & control during free fall were good.
A (relatively) small CH4 leak led to fire on engine 2 & fried part of avionics, causing hard start attempting landing burn in CH4 turbopump.
This is getting fixed 6 ways to Sunday.
– Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 5, 2021
An exciting test
At the launch, the SpaceX announcer, John Insprucker, called the test an “exciting test.”
SN11 is the eleventh Starship prototype that SpaceX hopes it will one day be able to fly manned missions into space.
It was also the fourth performing a flight test trying to return to the ground for a soft vertical landing.
The SN8 and SN9, which were launched in December and February respectively, crashed on landing and exploded, while the SN10 managed to land successfully but exploded within minutes of the test on March 3.
Despite these failures, analysts believe that SpaceX is collecting valuable data that can help accelerate the development of its space program.
Eventually, SpaceX plans to combine the Starship with a Super Heavy rocket, creating a fully reusable team.
This final version will stand 120 meters high and will be able to carry 100 metric tons into Earth orbit, the most powerful launch vehicle ever developed.
Elon Musk does not give up and already has the SN15 ready for another test (Photo: Reuters)
SpaceX is already helping
However, SpaceX is already helping astronauts, especially on the International Space Station where they function as “taxis.”
“Our recent agreement with private industry allows us to transport more people to the Station,” said Joel Montalbano, director of station programs at NASA.
SpaceX’s Dragon capsule can carry four astronauts (compared to the three that Russia’s Soyuz can carry), the standard crew size recently increased from six to seven people. (AFP)