Video captured from Space X’s rocket development facility in McGregor, Texas shows the unbridled force delivered by the company’s SuperDraco rocket engine when it ignites for liftoff.
You’ll see a placid facility forcefully ignite with a whirring stream of firepower once this baby fires up.
Behold, the SuperDraco!
The SuperDraco generates 120,000 pounds of thrust, which, as NASA’s Commercial Crew Program points out, can propel a rocket toward the heavens at 100 miles per hour in as little as 1.2 seconds.
But, the SuperDraco isn’t just a boastful source of energy: It’s intended to serve as the launch escape system for SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft. So if a launch veers into the danger zone, astronauts will be able to more easily abort the mission, given that the SuperDraco remains attached to the Crew Dragon throughout the entire launch, unlike traditional launch escape systems.
Here’s the Crew Dragon interior:
The SuperDraco engine has been test-fired a total of 27 times since its development in February 2012, and NASA notes that this particular engine isn’t really a singular engine at all, but a configuration of eight engines. It’s basically a wall of engines, and it’s been completely developed via 3D printing, instead of parceled together by lumbering hunks of steel and plastic in a factory.
Hello future of space exploration.