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SpaceX’s Starship rocket prototype collapsed on itself this weekend

Christine Fisher
Contributing Writer
SpaceX

Another SpaceX test ended in failure this past weekend. A prototype of the company's Starship rocket, SN1, imploded in a pressure test late Friday night. Elon Musk acknowledged the incident on Twitter, sharing a video and writing, "It's fine, we'll just buff it out."

The prototype caved in on itself after being filled with super-cold, liquid nitrogen propellant, The Verge reports. In a tweet, Musk said it had to do with a "puck" at the base of the vehicle. "Don't shuck the puck!" he joked.

Musk said the company plans to strip the next Starship rocket prototype, SN2, to the bare minimum and test its puck under pressure, first with water, and then with the cryo propellant. It could be ready to test in just a few days.

SN1 was the first of a series of test articles that SpaceX is building and testing in order to refine the systems needed for a fully functional Starship, according to Space.com. "Each SN will have at least minor improvements, at least through SN20 or so of Starship V1.0," Musk tweeted in December.

SpaceX revealed the first full Starship prototype, Starship Mk1, last fall. A couple months later, its bulkhead blew off during a pressure test. The company has already moved on to the second- and third-generations, Mk2 and Mk3. But with these test failures, it's hard to say if it's still on track to meet the ambitious timeline Musk once promised.