On 9 December, SpaceX Starship serial number 8 (SN8) lifted off from the Cameron County launch pad and successfully ascended, transitioned propellant, and performed its landing flip maneuver with precise flap control to reach its landing point. During the landing, however, low pressure in the fuel header tank led to high touchdown velocity resulting in a very hard landing and an explosion.
The SpaceX Starship project is a fully-reusable, two-stage-to-orbit, super heavy-lift launch vehicle under development by SpaceX since 2012.
Despite the hard landing and the subsequent explosion, founder, CEO and chief-designer of SpaceX Elon Musk was happy about the result and congratulated the SpaceX team.
Fuel header tank pressure was low during landing burn, causing touchdown velocity to be high & RUD, but we got all the data we needed! Congrats SpaceX team hell yeah!!
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 9, 2020