SpaceX tried many times to land its reusable Falcon 9 rocket on a floating drone ship in the sea but the first few attempts failed. It was only after Blue Origin landed its reusable rocket on solid ground that SpaceX did the same to show that its rockets are capable of being reused. It tried again after that landing and failed, but nailed the one after that, and now it has landed another Falcon 9 rocket on a floating drone ship.
The Falcon 9 rocket was launched into space on Friday to transport a Japanese communications satellite. SpaceX wasn’t too hopeful initially that it would nail the second landing because the satellite’s destination would subject the rocket to extreme velocities and re-entry heating, “making a successful landing unlikely,” the company said.
Despite that, the company was able to nail the landing of the Falcon 9 rocket on a floating drone ship at sea after the satellite was deployed correctly. SpaceX has now demonstrated that the first landing wasn’t a fluke and that it’s capable of repeating the process.
Hans Koenigsmann, Space’s vice president of mission assurance, has said that the company is going to attempt landing its rockets at sea for the next several launches as well to perfect the process so that it’s able to land and reuse as many of its Falcon 9 rockets as it possibly can.
Landing confirmed. Second stage continuing to carry JCSAT-14 to a Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit. pic.twitter.com/HfHI5cwoYX
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) May 6, 2016