It was a bittersweet weekend for SpaceX. On one hand, the company on Sunday afternoon successfully launched a weather satellite into orbit. On the opposite end of the spectrum, the company’s third attempt to safely bring back a rocket booster and have it safely land on a floating ocean barge ended in an explosion.
Less than a month ago, SpaceX made history when it launched a Falcon 9 rocket up into space and successfully managed to bring the booster back down to earth, landing it safely on a concrete landing pad.
Earlier today, SpaceX was at it again, only this time it was attempting to land a booster on a floating barge – or a ‘droneship’ as SpaceX calls it – in the Pacific Ocean. Unfortunately, though, things did not exactly go as planned as one of the booster’s landing legs broke upon impact. This marks the third time SpaceX has tried and failed to nail a ocean-based landing.
Late last month as 2015 was drawing to a close, SpaceX finally pulled off a successful rocket landing. It was the second such feat, and the news was huge — reusable rockets have long been a holy grail of sorts for the space industry as they stand to dramatically reduce the cost of space exploration.
We’ve already seen an earlier video of the takeoff and historic landing, but now SpaceX has released new video footage that has never been seen before. More →
There were 87 rocket launches in 2015.
You probably remember several of them, from the spectacular failures to the stunning triumphs, but did you realize how many rockets we launched last year? We averaged a new launch nearly every four days in 2015.
And now we have a video compilation of all but one of them.
SpaceX’s audacious vertical rocket landing on Monday lays a critical foundation for reusable rockets that could help humans colonize Mars, according to the company’s CEO Elon Musk.
“This is a critical step towards establishing a city on Mars,” he said, during a conference call with reporters after Monday’s launch. “Without [reusable rockets], it would be unaffordable – it dramatically improves my confidence that a city on Mars is possible, it’s what all this is about.”
After successfully sending its Falcon 9 rocket into orbit from Cape Canaveral, Florida on the satellite launch mission, the company landed a 15-story leftover booster rocket back on Earth. More →
A big step was made on Monday evening in the race to build space-bound rockets that can be used for multiple launches. As you have no doubt seen at this point, SpaceX successfully launched and then landed its Falcon 9 rocket on the ground. The staggering accomplishment came following a number of unsuccessful attempts, and it marks a big step forward in companies’ efforts to reduce the cost of missions to space.
We already showed you incredible photos and videos of this remarkable achievement, but now it’s time to watch the feat from a different angle. More →
SpaceX yesterday made history and caused an Internet frenzy when it launched a rocket into space and successfully manged to bring back the booster to earth, landing it safely on a concrete landing pad. In the wake of SpaceX’s momentous achievement, Jeff Bezos (who owns his own space company) publicly congratulated SpaceX via Twitter, as did NASA.
After a number of failed attempts at launching a Falcon 9 rocket and safely returning the booster back down to earth, Elon Musk and SpaceX finally have reason to celebrate. On Monday evening, SpaceX launched a Falcon 9 into space and successfully manged to bring the booster back down safely onto a gargantuan concrete landing pad in Cape Canaveral, Florida. The response from mission control, which you can check out via the YouTube video below, was overwhelmingly exciting and enthusiastic.
Whereas previous attempts saw SpaceX focus on water-based landings involving floating barges, Monday’s successful landing saw the company guide and land the booster back to land.
The successful launch and rousing landing was live-streamed via YouTube and saw the first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket return to safety before the successful deployment of 11 satellites to low-Earth orbit for a company called ORBCOMM. All in all, the mission was a complete and exhilarating success.
Elon Musk’s bold SpaceX reusable rocket program may have a more audacious goal in mind than just making space travel more affordable for missions around Earth. An investor with deeper knowledge of the matter revealed that SpaceX is all about going to Mars. More →
Twice this year, SpaceX has tried to launch a reusable rocket and have it return to earth and land safely on a floating ocean platform. Both attempts ended in failure. Undoubtedly an engineering challenge of the highest order, a SpaceX rocket this past April came remarkably close to sticking the landing before swerving slightly off angle just a moment before touchdown.
Though watching video of the failed landing might make it seem easy, there’s literally no room for error when it comes to getting a 360+ ton rocket to land gracefully, right side up.
SpaceX early on Sunday launched a Falcon 9 rocket into space from Cape Canaveral with the intention of delivering supplies and food to astronauts aboard the International Space Station. Alas, just two minutes after launch, the Falcon 9 rocket began to break up mid-air, ultimately exploding after being consumed by fire.
At the time of this writing, SpaceX is still investigating the root cause of the malfunction. Per usual, engineers will examine HD video of the launch to determine what went wrong, where, and why.