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SpaceX Adds Landing Legs to Falcon 9 Rocket for Next Launch

RATE THIS! +28
Posted in Science on 26th Feb, 2014 04:13 AM by AlexMuller

The private spaceflight company SpaceX is strapping landing gear onto the rocket that will launch the company's unmanned Dragon cargo capsule toward the International Space Station next month.Putting landing legs on the Falcon 9, is a step in SpaceX's quest to develop a fully reusable launch system.

 

But current plans don't call for the Falcon 9 to actually touch down on the legs after next month's liftoff, said SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk.

 
"Mounting landing legs (~60 ft span) to Falcon 9 for next month's Space Station servicing flight," Musk said Sunday (Feb. 23) via Twitter, where he posted a photo of the rocket. "However, F9 will continue to land in the ocean until we prove precision control from hypersonic thru subsonic regimes."
 
SpaceX holds a $1.6 billion contract to make 12 robotic supply runs to the space station for NASA using Dragon and the Falcon 9. The company has already completed two of these flights successfully; the March 16 flight will initiate contracted mission number three.
 
But the company's ambitions extend far beyond low-Earth orbit. Musk has said that he established SpaceX primarily to help humanity become a multiplanet species, and he hopes the company plays a prominent role in getting a Mars colony up and running.

 


Tags: spaceSpaceXElon MuskFalcon 9NASAISSDragon

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Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-02-26
+1
SpaceX is doing great. Many missions successfully accomplished and some important contracts with NASA in place. It would be great to see this continue!
4 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-02-26
+4
One of the key factors to move forward is developing a fully and rapidly reusable launch systems which could lower the cost of spaceflight by a factor of 100. Notably, SpaceX has been testing a reusable rocket prototype Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-02-26
+0
Yes, and SpaceX has also involved the Falcon 9 in its reusability research and development. Reply
Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-02-26
+3
Another important thing is that Spacex is to test reusable stage combustion raptor rocket engine this year. This is a methane-fueled engine and will be "a new trick" for SpaceX. Reply


 

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