Starting in March 2017, when SpaceX staff was finally able to get a practical concept of renewability in the use of their missiles, and many interesting and illustrative test runs was made - however, at first, the rocket company way or another passed through the stage of fix, modification and replacement of more parts after the next landing.
The Falcon 9 rocket launched from Vandenberg air force base in the United States 3 Dec 20:32.
The mission is SpaceX's 16th for NASA, as part of a long-term contract to ferry supplies to space. If that wasn't impressive enough, the launch was also SpaceX's 19th launch of the year-the previous record was 18-and it still has three more launches planned before the year is out.
Landing Zone 1 is located only 1,000 feet away from the Atlantic Ocean, which makes a last-minute detoured water landing attainable in the event of a malfunction. It was the first time a rocket has been used for a third time. "Now, the good news is we've got a lot of telemetry from it, so we'll be able to understand what happened and work to improve reliability as we always do here at SpaceX".
The hydraulic pump for the landing fins apparently stalled, but the engines stabilised the approximately 50m-tall booster just in time, allowing for "an intact landing in water!" SpaceX was scheduled to launch the Falcon 9 carrying the supplies on Tuesday but delayed the launch until Wednesday. SpaceX confirmed "an anomaly" in the fins that guide the rocket back to Earth.
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- Three days and 3,000 miles apart, SpaceX accomplished its second successful rocket launch of the week Wednesday, sending cargo to the International Space Station.
SpaceX chief Elon Musk said the booster appeared to be undamaged.
When the Dragon arrives, it will join five other spacecraft already at the station. Newcomers Russian cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko, NASA astronaut Anne McClain and Canadian astronaut David Saint-Jacques will stay until June.
Flight controllers at the Johnson Space Center in Houston will take over at that point, operating the arm by remote control to pull the Dragon in for berthing at the Earth-facing port of the station's forward Harmony module.
See that small space station?