There are moments in life when we think we have finally achieved something until minutes later we realise it was all an illusion. Something similar happened to the SpaceX fans and engineers on Wednesday when one of its prototype SN10 took off from Boca Chica, Texas and reached an altitude of 10 kilometres. It was all looking good and even impressive when the Starship descended horizontally and landed upright over the Gulf of Mexico. The starship landed amidst cheering crowds and even congratulatory tweets were sent out on the microblogging site. But it was all too early because a few minutes later the test rocket combusted into devastating flames. Notably, it was a test program and it wasn’t technically a “failure.”
The incident, nonetheless, triggered a meme fest on social media as the reaction of onlookers changed from sheer joy to sheer surprise.
— Christian Aichner (@realaichner) March 3, 2021
While some netizens posted messages of congratulations and RIP in a single sentence:
— Aboalhasan Shahir (@AbhShahir) March 4, 2021
The incident also reminded a few netizens to put to use the iconic Joey Tribbiani meme from the classic Friends show.
— jordan (@AstroJordy) March 3, 2021
This tweet as well left netizens in splits as it perfectly captured the reaction of everyone following the SN10 test flight:
— Mithcair (@mithcair) March 3, 2021
Another user wrote that it looked as if the Starship took off and landed again after it made that first impressive smooth landing.
SpaceX founder Elon Musk also posted a solemn tweet confirming the demise of SN10 as he called it an ‘honorable discharge’.
RIP SN10, honorable discharge
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 4, 2021
Astronaut Tim Peake, however, was optimistic despite the burning of the SpaceX starship as he wrote that it was incredible to watch SpaceX Starship nail the landing on just the third attempt. SN10 exploded eight mins later but that is what a test program is for, he wrote.
— Tim Peake (@astro_timpeake) March 4, 2021
It is speculated that the SpaceX SN10 starship exploded after landing due to a methane tank leak. This was the third flight test of the Starship which will possibly carry humans to Mars in the coming interplanetary future.