This is one huge explosion.
The rocket launch of Rocket startup Firefly Aerospaces Alpha rocket on Thursday was a spectacular success. It was an unfortunate ending to the first ever launch of the rocket.
At around 10 p.m. Eastern, the rocket took off from Space Launch Complex 2 at Vandenberg Space Force Base in California. Two and a quarter minutes into the maiden voyage, it began to fall and then exploded in a huge fireball.
The aerospace company based in Austin, Texas, stated that Alpha suffered an anomaly during the first stage of ascent, which resulted in the vehicle's loss. We will provide more details as we collect more information.
NASASpaceFlight captured the entire launch. Everything seems to be going as planned at first. The rocket begins to spin shortly after liftoff. A huge explosion followed by a cloud of dark smoke is left behind.
Glass Half Full
The rocket carried just over 200 pounds of cubesats and technology demonstrations as well as photos, memorabilia, and other items.
Despite the explosive growth, the company's statement is remarkable optimism.
Although we didn't meet all our mission objectives, it stated that we achieved a few: first stage ignition success, liftoff from the pad, progress to supersonic speed and a lot of flight data.
It says that the engineers of the teams are currently combing through thousands upon thousands of lines in flight and ground telemetry to better understand what happened.
SpaceNews reported that the company revealed that it had stopped the launch. This suggests that the explosion was deliberately triggered to prevent the rocket from veering off course. According to SpaceNews, the rocket didn't reach sufficient speed quickly enough.
Lauren Lyons (Firefly COO), stated that our big goal is for Alpha to go to space. Our goals are to gather as much data and get Alpha as far as possible.
READ MORE: Firefly Alpha explodes at launch [SpaceNews]
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