SpaceX Unveils Cutting-Edge System to Ensure Safe Spacecraft Launches

Raptor engines melted the previous launch pad

SpaceX Unveils Cutting-Edge System to Ensure Safe Spacecraft Launches
Chema Carvajal Sarabia

Chema Carvajal Sarabia

  • Updated:

SpaceX has released stunning footage showcasing tests of a new water deluge system designed to mitigate damages caused by its powerful Starship rocket during liftoff from the launch platform.


The next-generation Starship vehicle consists of the first-stage Super Heavy booster and the upper-stage Starship spacecraft, collectively known as Starship.

With 7 tons of thrust, Starship is the most powerful rocket ever built.

A safety measure to prevent the launch pad from disintegrating

SpaceX tested the Starship in an ill-fated first flight back in April. Upon liftoff, the platform disintegrated, unable to withstand the immense heat and force generated by the 33 Raptor engines of the rocket.

Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX, recently revealed that the company has built what he described as a “megasteel plate” to protect the launch platform.

The plate is combined with the water deluge system and is designed to “protect against the immense heat and force of Starship’s launch.” Here we can see the water being poured during a recent test at SpaceX’s launch site in Boca Chica, Texas.

SpaceX also shared a stunning image capturing the moment the water is shot out, and provided a closer look at the system in action in slow motion.

After the starship exploded mid-flight during its inaugural flight due to an unexpected anomaly, SpaceX is eager to send its rocket soaring into the sky on its second test flight in the coming months.

But following the recent water deluge system test, CNBC reported that SpaceX has not yet obtained an environmental permit to discharge industrial process waters into the area surrounding the launch platform, according to the federal Clean Water Act.

However, it is not entirely clear whether SpaceX actually needs the permit, as it would depend on the nature and quantity of contaminants mixed with the rocket water during liftoff, and where that water ends up.

Indeed, whether this will be a problem that delays the next starship launch remains to be seen. SpaceX is also awaiting approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), which grounded the Starship after the April test while conducting an investigation into the failed test flight.

Once fully tested, the Starship could potentially transport crews and cargo to the Moon and even Mars. However, there are still many steps in between to see that become a reality.


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Chema Carvajal Sarabia

Chema Carvajal Sarabia

Journalist specialized in technology, entertainment and video games. Writing about what I'm passionate about (gadgets, games and movies) allows me to stay sane and wake up with a smile on my face when the alarm clock goes off. PS: this is not true 100% of the time.

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