Space Explored

Firefly's maiden Alpha launch ends with inflight failure

By Seth Kurkowski

September 2, 2021

Like any first-time rocket launch, getting flight data is more important than anything else. If you make it to orbit along the way, that’s a plus.

Image: Firefly

The countdown included an abort at T-8 seconds that stopped the count due to an unknown anomaly. Firefly was able to resolve the anomaly to the point that they reset the count for later in the window.

Image: Firefly

The second count went smoother with the team giving the final GO for launch again. This time without an auto abort from the rocket and Alpha rose from the launch pad for the very first time.

Image: Firefly / Everyday Astronaut

The launch went smoothly, from what we could tell, until T+2:30 where the launch was aborted. In laymen’s terms, it blew up.

Either way, getting this far in their first flight should be taken as an achievement. Building rockets is a difficult business and challenges like these show up frequently in first launches.

Image: Firefly

Congratulations to the teams at Firefly for getting this far. We look forward to seeing their next launch attempt soon.

Image: Firefly