On a sunny morning in Texas, the monumental Booster 9 from Space X steadily approaches the launch site, ready to reveal its hidden power and the effectiveness of the repairs made to the ignition pad. Last week's test was a crucial step in the preparations for the upcoming mission.
Super Heavy Booster 9: Thursday, July 20th, witnessed a practice ignition of Super Heavy Booster 9 at the Starbase facility in southern Texas. The launch pad, damaged during the Starship flight on April 20th, which left behind only an empty crater, has been successfully repaired and enhanced with a water cooling system.
Booster 9 underwent testing of these systems while evaluating its own performance. SpaceX engineers simultaneously ignited all 33 Raptor V2 engines, recording various parameters for several minutes. The monitored variables included thrust, pressure, and temperature, as reported by Tesmanian. Will Booster 9 make it to orbit?
Throughout the testing, the spacecraft remained grounded, and the consumed fuel was a combination of liquid oxygen and methane. Should Booster 9 not meet expectations, a ready-to-go Booster 10 stands in reserve. However, Elon Musk faces additional challenges.
SpaceX currently faces regulatory issues, as authorities have accused the company of potentially damaging natural ecosystems in Texas during rocket launches. This uncertainty raises questions about whether Booster 9 will even receive clearance for its flight, leaving its launch in doubt at this moment.