Harlingen, Texas (KVEO)—After days of back-and-forth wrangling with the Federal Aviation Administration, the much-awaited launch of SpaceX’s SN9 Starship rocket came to an explosive end Tuesday when it failed to land at the company’s Boca Chica launchpad Tuesday afternoon.
The end was similar to the last test flight in December, which also ended in an explosion at landing.
These prototypes are unmanned, and SN9 is only supposed to travel about 6.2 miles (10 kilometers) in the air.
Watch the launch here:
The update of the launch came early Tuesday morning, as the Federal Aviation Administration approved the launch, according to NASASpaceflight.
The FAA determined late Monday that SpaceX complies with all safety and related federal regulations and is authorized to conduct Starship SN9 flight operations in accordance with its launch license.
Boca Chica Village residents were asked to evacuate for the possible flight attempt.
The approval has been a long time coming. SpaceX first began making final preparations for a launch more than a week ago.
An attempt on January 25, was eventually called off. Then, on Jan.26 SpaceX went so far as to evacuate Boca Chica residents.
On Jan. 28, SpaceX founder and Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk tweeted that the FAA had not given the company approval to launch.
“The FAA space division has a fundamentally broken regulatory structure,” Musk said.