Watch The First-Ever Attempt To Land A Rocket After An Orbital Launch [VIDEO]

Giuseppe Macri Tech Editor
Font Size:

Almost a week after launching its fifth resupply mission to the International Space Station, SpaceX released a video Friday morning of its first attempt to land a rocket on a floating sea platform after an orbital launch.

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk tweeted the first still frames of the touchdown attempt shot from a camera aboard the company’s drone ship landing platform early Friday, which was followed up by a video from SpaceX’s Twitter feed.

Last weekend Musk reported that the Falcon 9 rocket’s grid fins, which steer the rocket after reentry, ran just 10 percent short on hydraulic fluid before right before touchdown, causing the rocket to tip, come down hard and explode on the platform. (RELATED: Damaged SpaceX Drone Ship Returns To Port After Failed Rocket Landing Impact)


SpaceX previously stated that stabilizing the Falcon 9 for reentry and landing on its autonomous spaceport drone ship would be like “trying to balance a rubber broomstick on your hand in the middle of a wind storm,” and only estimated the chances of success at 50 percent. (RELATED: SpaceX Will Try To Land A Rocket After Reentry For The First Time)

The ship only suffered minor damage, and Musk reports the company’s next attempt in two to three weeks will include 50 percent more hydraulic fluid.

Follow Giuseppe on Twitter and Facebook