SpaceX Makes History, Successfully Lands Falcon 9 Rocket Back on Earth After Launching It Into Space
SpaceX made history Monday night.
The aerospace manufacturer successfully landed its Falcon 9 booster rocket back on Earth at Cape Canaveral, Florida, after using it to ship 11 ORBCOMM satellites into space.
This marks the first time that such a rocket has ever landed vertically back on Earth after flying so deep into space.
“This has been a wildly successful return to flight for SpaceX,” a SpaceX launch commentator said, according to the Associated Press. “We made history today.”
Chants of “USA, USA, USA!” soon broke out at Cape Canaveral.
“Bullseye,” tweeted ORBCOMM CEO Marc Eisenberg.
SpaceX has tried before to land a rocket, but those attempts — all using a floating platform on the ocean — have failed.
The company believes it can significantly reduce the cost of space flight if it is able to reuse rockets. Until now, a new rocket has needed to be built for each new launch.
Jeff Bezos’ company Blue Origin succeeded in landing a rocket earlier this year. SpaceX founder Elon Musk noted, however, in the aftermath that the Falcon 9 rocket is more sophisticated and able to travel further into space at greater speeds.
Nevertheless, Bezos took a shot at SpaceX after its successful mission.
“Welcome to the club!” he wrote in a tweet.
Musk reacted on Twitter, ignoring Bezos entirely: “Welcome back, baby!”
Monday’s mission was the first after a SpaceX rocket en route to the International Space Station exploded over the summer.