Brownsville, Texas (KVEO)—SpaceX Starship SN8 prototype exploded after a flight test at Space X launch facility in Boca Chica on Wednesday.
SpaceX Starship SN8 flight test was originally scheduled for Tuesday morning, but the launch was aborted at T minus two seconds.
The Starship was running all three raptor engines in an attempt to reach a height of more than 41,000 feet.
The craft did a belly flop maneuver and then corrected itself. The prototype came in for a landing at an angle before exploding.
Elon Musk said via Twitter, “Successful ascent, switchover to header tanks & precise flap control to landing point!”
Musk also said fuel header tank pressure was low during landing burn, which caused the touchdown velocity to be high.
The Starship spacecraft was set for a brief suborbital mission to test its performance.
SpaceX teams had their eyes on many elements within the spacecraft and how they do in real space flight conditions.
According to the SpaceX website, this was the first attempt at a high-altitude suborbital flight test from the Cameron County site.
The test’s objective is to show how the engines perform and the capabilities.
SpaceX has previously completed two low altitude test with Starship SN5 and SN6.
With SN8, SpaceX is taking a step toward the development of transportation capable of carrying crew and cargo to Earth and orbit the moon and Mars, says the SpaceX website.