Texas (USA) December 10: SpaceX launched its Starship on the spacecraft's highest test flight ever Wednesday, but the trial run ended in a massive fireball.
The futuristic Starship launched from South Texas Wednesday afternoon and soared 8 miles in the air over the Gulf of Mexico.
After skimming the stratosphere, the Starship returned to earth's surface, exploding as it hit the ground.
"Low pressure in the fuel header tank during the landing burn led to high touchdown velocity resulting in a hard (and exciting!) landing," SpaceX explained on the company's website.
Despite the explosion at the end, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said the unmanned test flight was a success and his team got all the data it needed.
"Successful ascent, switchover to header tanks & precise flap control to landing point," Musk tweeted, adding that South Texas "is the gateway to Mars."
Musk had downplayed the likelihood of complete success going into the test flight, saying last month that the chances of the Starship landing in one piece were only "1/3."
The Starship is a reusable transportation system that SpaceX hopes will someday carry the first humans to Mars.
Two prior test flights of the Starship earlier this year were succesful, though they reached a much lower altitude.
No one was injured in the crash.
Source: Fox News