“SpaceX” rocket propulsion system fails – Elon Musk threatens bankruptcy – economy

Advocate SpaceX?

Tesla boss and high-flyer Elon Musk (50) is angry about the lack of progress made by his space company “SpaceX” in the development of the “Raptor” engines that are supposed to power his Starship rockets.

Musk described what he saw as the dramatic situation on the day after Thanksgiving in a circular to employees, which was now forwarded to the US broadcaster “CNBC”.

“The Raptor production crisis is much worse than it seemed a few weeks ago,” Musk wrote in that email.

And then about the risk of bankruptcy: “We are exposed to a real risk of bankruptcy if we can not achieve a” Starship “flight rate at least every two weeks next year,” added Musk later.

On the way to Mars

Musks Starship is a next generation spaceship that SpaceX is developing to take cargo and people on missions to the moon or Mars.

The US company is testing prototypes at a facility in southern Texas and has already flown several short test flights. However, to get to the orbit space level, the rocket prototypes will each require up to 39 Raptor engines – which will require a sharp increase in engine production.

According to the broadcaster CNBC, SpaceX left a request about the Musk mail unanswered.

▶ ︎ Musk said on November 17 that SpaceX will “hopefully” launch the first orbital Starship flight in January or February 2022, subject to FAA approval and technical readiness.

November 10, 2021: A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying the Crew Dragon capsule takes off from launch pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, FloridaPhoto: John Raoux / dpa

SpaceX wants Starship to be fully reusable, with both the rocket and its booster landing after a launch and being able to be restored for future flights.

SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rockets are partially reusable. The company can regularly land and restart the boosters, but not the top or stage of the rocket.

Musk said earlier this month that he wasn’t sure whether Starship would successfully reach orbit on the first attempt, but emphasized that he was “confident” that the rocket will hit space in 2022.

Expensive “hobby”: Musk’s space project has so far been “financed at least 90 percent from its own resources,” according to his statements, although the company does not seek any “international cooperation” or external financing.

It remains to be seen whether Musk’s investment will eventually become self-sustaining, or whether it will remain a money-burning machine.