SpaceX's chief executive says last week's launch pad accident is the "most difficult and complex failure" in the company's 14-year history.
After a week of public silence, SpaceX founder Elon Musk said via Twitter that the company is still investigating the accident. He's calling it a Falcon fireball, versus an explosion.
Still working on the Falcon fireball investigation. Turning out to be the most difficult and complex failure we have ever had in 14 years.-; Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 9, 2016
A massive fireball erupted during a prelaunch test Sept. 1 at Cape Canaveral, Florida. The Falcon rocket and a satellite were destroyed, and the pad was damaged.
If you have audio, photos or videos of our anomaly last week, please send to email@example.com. Material may be useful for investigation-- SpaceX (@SpaceX) September 9, 2016
Particularly puzzling, according to Musk, is "the quieter bang" heard right before the fireball. He says it may have come from the rocket or something else. The rocket engines had yet to fire as part of the test, and so there was no apparent heat source.