Why do we return to earth neutrally

The flight was largely successful, Space-X only has to practice a bit when landing: The Californian rocket manufacturer has another prototype of its future lunar and Mars spaceship in the Texan coastal town of Boca Chica on Wednesday afternoon local time Starship tested. The approximately 50 meter high rocket made of stainless steel with the designation SN 8 (serial number 8) was to reach a height of 12.5 kilometers for the first time and then touch down again at the launch site. After a successful ascent, the engines switched off, and about four and a half minutes after take-off, the vehicle went sideways as planned in order to brake - a test for returning to Earth after a mission in space. Less than two minutes later, the engines re-ignited to bring the rocket into the vertical landing position. It is not a matter of course in space travel that such a difficult maneuver works right away. At first it looked like a precision landing for the prototype, but it touched down too quickly and exploded.

"The pressure in the fuel tank was low during the landing, which led to a high touchdown speed and RUD, but we have all the data we need!" Tweeted Space-X boss Elon Musk. With the euphemism RUD he is a "Rapid Unscheduled Disassembly"said - a" quick, unscheduled dismantling ".

The SZ editorial team has enriched this article with content from YouTube

To protect your data, it was not loaded without your consent.

I consent to content from YouTube being displayed to me. In this way, personal data is transmitted to the operator of the portal for usage analysis. You can find more information and the possibility of revocation at sz.de/datenschutz.

This external content was loaded automatically because you agreed to it.

Due to a problem with the engine, the test flight was canceled on Tuesday about 1.3 seconds before it was scheduled to start. Also on Wednesday there was only one start abort, which is part of such tests. In previous tests, a prototype had been shot up to around 150 meters. The aim of the experiments is to test individual elements of the new rocket. Starship According to Musk's plans, it will be transporting freight and people to the moon and Mars in a few years. "Mars, we're coming," commented Musk after Wednesday's test. One of the next test flights could already go into orbit.

The SpaceX founder wants Starship make it completely reusable. In the Falcon-9Missiles that Space-X uses for flights to the ISS space station, among other things, return rocket stages and fairings back to Earth to be used again.

© SZ / dpa / Reuters / kler / odg