Yesterday, SpaceX made a historic landing of its Falcon 9 rocket on a drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean after the primary mission of delivering 7,000 pounds of supplies to the International Space Station was successful.
This is the first time that SpaceX has successfully landed one of its reusable rockets on a drone ship at sea, and there have been many failures leading up to this historic event that have helped the commercial space company to learn a lot about getting things right.
SpaceX has only ever been able to land on its Falcon 9 rockets on solid ground before, so being able to land on a small ship at sea is quite the feat. It’s also significantly safer than trying to land a rocket on solid ground because it prevents people from getting hurt in case of an emergency landing.
On the mission, which launched yesterday, the Falcon 9 rocket had tons of food, experiments, equipment, and more aboard it that International Space Station astronauts will use while they’re on board and orbiting planet Earth.
Among one of the things the International Space Station received is the new inflatable module that will be attached to the side of the space station to see how feasible collapsible modules are going to be for future deep space travel missions.
The footage of the Falcon 9 rocket touching down on the drone ship was recorded by SpaceX in 4K Ultra-HD quality from an aerial view and uploaded to YouTube for the world to see. You can watch the landing below:
This is a big step forward for SpaceX, and now the company can continue to work on fine-tuning the landing process for future space missions.
Reusable rocket technology is the way of the future, as building a new rocket each and every time a space mission is ordered costs about $16,000,000 compared to the $250,000 price tag to simply re-fuel an existing rocket that has been used before. Each rocket can reportedly be used up to about 10 times.
In other news, Blue Origin just successfully landed its New Shepard commercial rocket for a third time.
Source: Elon Musk (SpaceX CEO)