Remnants of a United States-based space rocket has reportedly been discovered in the Ocean after having washed up on the cost of Scilly in the United Kingdom on Thursday by a boat captain who goes by the name of Joseph Thomas.
The remnants, which measured in at around 33 feet by 13 feet, appear to be pieces leftover from the SpaceX Falcon 9 un-manned International Space Station mission that took place earlier this year, but unfortunately ended in a bang. Images of the rocket components clearly show the United States flag, as well as the text “Falcon 9” on it.
Covered in barnacles, and being unspotted for nearly four months, the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket was first thought to be some kind of dead whale before the captain realized it was no whale. The Coast Guard has recovered the piece of rocket from the waters and has worked to remove the barnacles from the surface so it can be better observed.
“There were lots of gulls on the water and I thought initially it was a dead whale and the birds were feeding off it,” Thomas said. “It turned out they were feeding off goose barnacles.”
“I didn't know what it was. We tried to drag it ashore using a hook, but it bent it. First thoughts, were that it was part of a plane, but then we scraped the barnacles off and we saw it was part of a rocket.”
The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket blasted off from the grounds of Cape Canaveral, Florida before a failed strut caused the rocket to explode in mid-air just moments after take-off. The rocket was carrying no human beings, but did have critical supplies needed by the International Space Station, such as a food restock, as well as science equipment that the astronauts would use to conduct experiments in space.
For the rocket piece to be uncovered where it was, it had traveled approximately 4,100 miles across the Atlantic Ocean before being found. Authorities are happy that the recovery was successful and that a team of professionals were able to recover the piece.