Email
Password
Remember meForgot password?
    Log in with Twitter

article imageSpaceX Falcon 9 makes a fiery but successful Atlantic landing

By Karen Graham     Oct 31, 2017 in Science
SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket successfully delivered Koreasat-5A to its designated orbit, marking the company’s 16th successful mission of the year. Shortly after liftoff, the Falcon 9 first stage made a successful, but fiery landing on SpaceX's barge.
On Monday at 3:34 p.m., SpaceX had a successful launch of the Koreasat-5A satellite from Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, Florida. Following stage separation, Falcon 9’s first stage successfully landed on the “Of Course I Still Love You” drone-ship, stationed some 300 miles away in the Atlantic Ocean.
Video footage shows the Falcon 9's base engulfed in flames as it lands on the drone-ship. The video feed momentarily cuts off as the base of the rocket begins entering the frame, however, moments later, the feed comes back on with the booster rocket standing on the ship, its bottom still on fire.
"A little toasty, but stage one is certainly still intact on the drone ship," SpaceX lead mechanical engineer John Federspiel said during launch commentary, according to Space.com.
Falcon 9 with Koreasat-5A ready for launch on Pad 39A.
Falcon 9 with Koreasat-5A ready for launch on Pad 39A.
SpaceX
Koreasat-5A communications satellite
The Koreasat-5A is a commercial communications satellite that was launched into a Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO). The satellite is owned by KT Sat, South Korea's only satellite service provider. Manufactured by Thales Alenia Space, Koreasat-5A will provide Direct-to-Home (DTH) broadcast, broadband, and backhaul services with its Ku-Band capacity.
Koreasat-5A will replace Koreasat 5, expanding KT Sat's coverage across Asia and the Middle East. And unlike other satellites in the company's fleet, the Koreasat 5A will provide maritime coverage of the Persian Gulf, Indian Ocean, South China Sea, and the East China Sea.
The first stage of a SpaceX Falcon 9 sits on the deck of the drone ship “Of Course I Still Love Yo...
The first stage of a SpaceX Falcon 9 sits on the deck of the drone ship “Of Course I Still Love You” shortly after launching the Koreasat-5A satellite on Oct. 30, 2017.
SpaceX
SpaceX closer to reusable rockets
Back in April, with yet another successful launch and recovery of a Falcon 9 booster rocket, the discussion over the cost of rocket launches heated up, with United Launch Alliance (ULA) dropping the cost of its workhorse Atlas 5 rocket flights by about one-third.
Monday's rocket landing was the 19th that SpaceX has successfully pulled off during orbital launches. These successful recoveries of booster rockets are all part of Elon Musk's plan to cut the cost of spaceflight by developing reusable rockets and space vehicles.
And while Monday's launch used a new Falcon 9 rocket, SpaceX has successfully re-flown three of these landed Falcon 9 first stages, as well as one Dragon cargo capsule. And SpaceX's next launch of a supply vehicle to the International Space Station (ISS) for NASA will feature a pre-flown Dragon.
More about Spacex, fiery landing, korean satellite, Atlantic ocean, Technology
More news from