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SpaceX completes a hot fire test of its massive Super Heavy rocket [Updated]


Update, 4:45 pm ET: Well, they did it.

At around 3:15 pm local time in South Texas, SpaceX ignited its Super Heavy rocket for a "full duration" test of its Raptor engines. According to SpaceX founder Elon Musk, the launch team turned off one engine just prior to ignition, and another stopped itself. Still, he said 31 of 33 engines would have provided enough thrust to reach orbit. This is a huge milestone for SpaceX that potentially puts the company on track for an orbital test flight during the second half of March or possibly early April.

This is the most engines ignited on a rocket ever. The thrust output of these engines, too, was likely nearly double that of NASA's Saturn 5 rocket or Space Launch System. The good news for SpaceX is that, at least from early views, the launch infrastructure in South Texas looked mostly unscathed.

Original post: After years of preparatory work, SpaceX plans to ignite all 33 of the main engines on its massive Super Heavy rocket booster today. This is the first stage of the company's Starship rocket, which is intended to be fully reusable, to help power NASA's return to the Moon and one day possibly help humans settle on Mars.

Anarchapulco 2023