A Blue Origin rocket exploded on a Monday morning while on its way into space. The New Shepard capsule’s abort system was triggered, causing the main space capsule to fire its thrusters and fly away from the exploding rocket. About 64 seconds after launch the rocket suddenly experienced a huge and unexpected plume of fire jutting out from the engine and exploded like a hydrogen bomb.
The rocket was pulverized and the passenger capsule got shot out by the force of the rocket explosion and had to execute an unplanned parachute landing (in the West Texas desert) with a forceful impact on landing due to its very low altitude.
The mission was not carrying any passengers onboard (fortunately) with just scientific payloads onboard. Blue Origin, founded by Jeff Bezos, has not yet released any details on the cause of the rocket booster’s massive explosion.
New Shepard will be grounded until an investigation by the Federal Aviation Administration is completed. It’s the New Shepard’s first major failure since the booster was lost during its debut flight on April 29, 2015. Since then, the company has flown New Shepard on 21 missions, including six crewed spaceflights without any explosion.