SpaceX Starship rocket that will one day take man to Mars EXPLODES during planned test

A SPACEX rocket tank has exploded at a site in Texas as part of a pressure test carried out by the US space exploration firm.

Footage of the stainless steel rocket part captured Thursday shows a white substance pouring from its hull before it's destroyed on purpose.

Such tests are necessary to find out how much pressure a tank can take before it reaches breaking point.

Video of the experiment was filmed by NasaSpaceFlight at SpaceX's Starship facility near Boca Chica in South Texas.

Thursday's test involved a single tank but the final spacecraft will look a lot more like a traditional rocket, sporting a cone-shaped nose.

It will stand 165ft (50 metres) tall and boast six of SpaceX's powerful Raptor engines.

Billionaire SpaceX boss Elon Musk hopes to send a million people to Mars in his lifetime using a 1,000-strong fleet of the powerful rockets.

SpaceX has completed numerous pressure tests of the spacecraft in recent months.

Such trials help engineers design future versions of Starship. The one blown apart was its seventh prototype, dubbed SN7.

The demise of SN7 paves the way for SN8, which unlike its predecessors will fly under three Raptor engines, rather than one.

SpaceX hopes to fly the contraption 12 miles (20km) into the air – higher than any prototype before it.

SpaceX successfully completed its second "hop" test of a Starship rocket tank prototype earlier this month.

Propelled by a prototype Raptor engine, the rocket part was propelled 500 feet (152 metres) into the air before successfully landing again.

The California company is still in the early stages of Starship's development, but engineers have been working on the rocket for years.

The machine promises to be the world's most powerful spacecraft if SpaceX ever gets the full version off the ground.

According to SpaceX, the contraption will hit speeds of 15,000mph (25,000kph).

In a series of tweets earlier this year, Musk outlined how his Starlink plans would open up space travel to anyone, regardless of their income.

"Needs to be such that anyone can go if they want, with loans available for those who don't have money," he wrote.

Musk's plan involves building an expansive fleet of Starship vehicles, which comprise a huge rocket topped by a bullet-shaped spacecraft.

SpaceX says reusable rockets that can land and take off again make space travel more cost effective, accessible and sustainable.

What is SpaceX?

Here’s what you need to know…

SpaceX is a cash-flushed rocket company that wants to take man to Mars.

It was set up by eccentric billionaire Elon Musk in 2002 and is based in Hawthorne, California.

SpaceX's first aim was to build rockets that could autonomously land back on Earth and be re-used.

Musk hoped the technology would make flying and operating space flights far cheaper.

SpaceX currently uses its reusable rockets to fly cargo to the International Space Station for Nasa.

It also carries satellites and other space tech into orbit for various international governments and companies.

The company will take astronauts up to the ISS for the first time in 2020.

Other future missions involve carrying tourists and astronauts to the Moon.

Musk has repeatedly said he believes humanity must colonise Mars to save itself from extinction.

He plans to get a SpaceX rocket to the Red Planet sometime in the 2030s.

In other news, SpaceX completed its second successful Starship test flight earlier this month.

Musk wants to send humans to Mars as early as 2024 aboard one of the huge rockets.

And, Nasa set a hillside on fire during a recent test of the "most powerful rocket ever built".

What do you think of Musk's plans for Starship? Let us know in the comments!

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