Rushing to eBay To Sell Starship Fragments- Some Cost A Fortune!

26th Mar 2024
Rushing to eBay To Sell Starship Fragments- Some Cost A Fortune!

Ceramic heat shield tiles, designed to safeguard SpaceX’s Starship from overheating during reentry into Earth’s atmosphere, are now fetching thousands of dollars on eBay. There appears to be a profitable market for distinctive souvenirs such S Starship fragments once affixed to some of the largest human-made objects ever to soar through the skies.

The Elon Musk-led company has launched three fully-stacked Starship prototypes into orbit thus far. The initial two attempts, conducted in April and November 2023, culminated in colossal explosions. Consequently, remnants of approximately 18,000 hexagonal ceramic tiles were scattered across the adjacent beaches of South Texas on each occasion.

During the most recent orbital launch attempt last week, the latest prototype successfully reached space, traversed beyond the continent of Africa and ultimately crashed into the Indian Ocean.

Spaceship Tiles Being Sold for Thousands of Dollars

According to Futurism, which was the first to report about this, some broken tiles collected a mere $30 while some fully intact tiles costed beyond the $2000. One of the Starship tiles was listed for the sum of $7500! Of course, it might not sell for this amount, but there were also items that did sell for just shy of $3,400.

Starship fragments for sale
Credit: screenshot, eBay

An eBay seller who found a tile floating in the water near the end of the jetties on South Padre Island claims that they contacted SpaceX, which told her she could effectively return or keep them. For many, the value of the debris has come as a welcome surprise. One man claims to have collected 120 tiles from La Pesca, Mexico, which happens to be 155 miles from Starbase. Realizing he might be sitting on a goldmine, he decided to make 11 more trips to Mexico since then. 

Workers involved in the Starship program were also presented with bronze Starship tile collectibles, which are now being listed on eBay for over $1,000.

SpaceX’s Hexagonal Titles: More Context

SpaceX chose to cloak one side of its colossal Starship with charcoal-black, hexagonal tiles to improve its endurance through the searing journey across Earth’s atmosphere at 25 times the speed of sound. 

Footage shared by the space company on X reveals the underside of the spacecraft, nicknamed Ship 28, being enveloped in an orange-red glow, described by Musk as a “hot plasma field” that expands as it reentered the atmosphere. This is the type of environment the tiles were made for!

The individual hexagonal tiles have become cherished artifacts among the staff at the space company. A widely circulated image from 2022 depicts SpaceX CEO Elon Musk using what appears to be one of these tiles as a makeshift snack tray.

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