Published: Sun, July 21, 2019
Sci-tech | By Patricia Wade

SpaceX Test-Fires 'Starhopper' Starship Prototype, Creates Big Fireball

SpaceX Test-Fires 'Starhopper' Starship Prototype, Creates Big Fireball

SpaceX is constructing several versions of the rocket on the firm's test facilities in Cape Canaveral, Florida and Boca Chica.

And now, just a few days later, another accident has occurred, this time involving the Starhopper test vehicle. However, the Starhopper appears to have come through the fire completely unscathed, though it might cause a slight delay with the vehicle's scheduled hop tests. And on Wednesday morning (July 17), onlookers confirmed that the squat-looking silver prototype appeared unscathed. The fire was quickly extinguished. These automobiles are meant to try out the Starship design and eventually test its capabilities in space.

"Big advantage of being made of high strength stainless steel: not bothered by a little heat", Musk replied on Thursday after someone asked if the Starhopper was okay. So far this year, SpaceX has sought more than $1.3 billion across three funding rounds, CNBC reported in June. They are also expected to test in an environment without fire.

He has estimated 2023 to be the year when SpaceX vehicles could reach for the moon and land there with humans onboard. And if Musk's recent comments on the subject are any indication, SpaceX may be shooting for the Moon sooner than we think.

Chinas space lab Tiangong 2 destroyed in controlled fall to earth
The two astronauts Jing Haipeng and Chen Dong conducted space science experiments and in-orbit maintenance in the space lab. China's Tiangong-2 spacecraft is plummeting back to Earth after purposely falling out of the planet's orbit.

Though NASA has already tapped Crew Dragon and Boeing's Starliner craft to begin shuttling United States astronauts to the International Space Station, Bridenstine told a Senate committee on Wednesday that NASA would not even have an estimate of the cost for its 2024 Artemis mission-ready until 2020.

Well, this is gonna sound pretty insane, but I think we could land on the moon in less than two years.

To achieve its goal of sending a spacecraft to the moon, SpaceX is facing quite some challenges, like the one on July 16, when a fireball collapsed its prototype Starship rocket during a ground test in Boca Chica, Texas.

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