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SpaceX successfully launches Starship in third flight test

The SpaceX Starship rocket taking off from the Starbase launch facility in Boca Chica, Texas, at 9:25AM ET on March 14th, 2023.
The third Starship test flight has fared far better than SpaceX’s previous two attempts. | Image: SpaceX

SpaceX’s massive Starship took off from the company’s Starbase launch facility in Boca Chica, Texas, at 9:25AM ET on Thursday morning. Unlike its two predecessors, it has stayed in one piece and is continuing to fly on its way to a planned splashdown in the Indian Ocean.

So far, it has completed the hot-staging separation from its Super Heavy booster and opened a payload door intended to demonstrate how it could be used for missions like delivering Starlink satellites into orbit. The latest update from SpaceX says that the vehicle has entered a “coast phase” before it attempts a planned in-space relight of the Raptor engines at about 40 minutes into the flight.

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