SpaceX Starhopper Launch Drone Video

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(CBS) — Space X released drone video today of its Starhopper flight test Tuesday (8/27).

Starhopper is the prototype of Elon Musk’s Mars rocket. After a few false starts, the starhopper made a spectacular but short flight on Tuesday.

The single-engine version of the SpaceX Starship rose nearly 150 meters over the Texas coast before coming back down for a soft landing.

“Congrats SpaceX team!!” Musk tweeted.

Starhopper is the first test prototype for a next-generation spacecraft Musk plans to use to send people around the moon and to Mars in the next decade.

After the flight, observant viewers on Twitter noted that the hopper seemed to lose a few of its parts during its brief hop.

On Monday, Starhopper’s first attempt at a long hop was aborted at the last second. The test had already been pushed back from earlier in August. Musk cited a wiring or connector issue with the igniters as the reason for the Monday delay.

Prior to both the Monday and Tuesday scheduled test times, residents near the company’s Boca Chica, Texas, facility were warned that a potential malfunction could unleash pressure waves strong enough to break windows in the area. Locals were advised to vacate all buildings and bring their pets outside during the test window to avoid the risk of flying glass.

The small test rocket, which looks something like a flying water tower (as noted by Musk himself), previously performed a brief hover at a height of 20 meters (66 feet) after dark on July 25.

Musk has said that this will be the final test flight for this particular prototype and that it will be converted into a test stand for Starship’s Raptor engines.

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