Starship: Successful Launch

ETA:  Telemetry was lost with the upper stage about 2 minutes into its boost;  apparently starship also exploded.

It is now 8:18 EDT and SpaceX’s second attempt to launch its Starship vehicle was a qualified success.

All 33 of the Raptor engines fired throughout the initial stages of the launch, producing some 19.5 million pounds of thrust.

The test followed its flight program up until a few seconds after booster separation, at which point it appears that the booster experienced a rapid, unscheduled disassembly.

Fortunately, it appears that the Starship main vehicle was unaffected and continued to climb, with all of its Raptor engines firing.

The flight will terminate in approximately an hour after launch, when a landing of Starship will be attempted.

Here are some images from the test flight:

Unfortunately Necessary Editorial Note: While I am very excited to see SpaceX launch the world’s largest space vehicle largely successfully, it should not go unmentioned that this achievement is marred by its financer, Elon Musk, who has recently endorsed antisemitic statements on his social networking platform “X”. I would imagine that the way this feels now is similar to what space travel enthusiasts living in London during the Blitz felt.

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