SpaceX Starship SN9 Explodes During Second Failed Landing

SpaceX conducted a high-altitude flight test of Starship SN9 on Tuesday, February 2, in Boca Chica, Texas, following the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)’s authorization after initial disapproval.

In late December, the FAA conducted an environmental review after SpaceX moved forward with its SN8 launch without the agency’s approval. On Monday, the FAA authorized SpaceX’s latest launch, which was the company’s second high-altitude suborbital flight test of a Starship prototype, a rocket that aims to carry humans to Mars.

Video shared by Dr. Debbie Alford shows the vehicle descending into a tilt and exploding as it neared a return to the launch pad less than a minute after its take off. “I sat 2.5 hours in the sun at the cove,” Alford wrote in a Twitter caption. “Was it worth it? YES! I’m watching history.” Credit: Dr. Debbie Alford via Storyful