SpaceX have been hard at work pushing the envelope of modern rockets. One of their major goals is to develop a fully reusable version of their Falcon 9 booster. Their test article, Grasshopper, has been making several “leaps” into the sky and returning to its launch pad under controlled flight. On Monday, October 7 2013, it made its highest leap yet, up to a whopping 744m! Check it out:
It’s cool to see Grasshopper making bigger and bigger leaps like this. The more SpaceX learns from these test flights, the closer they get to a fully reusable rocket. Reusability is key to bringing down launch costs and SpaceX are way ahead of the pack on this front.
I swear though, looking at the footage, I have a hard time believing it’s really doing that. That’s so freaking cool.
One Reply to “Video: SpaceX Makes a 744m Leap Into the Sky!”
That’s unbelievable. I’m just wondering, however, about the waste of energy required to de-accelerate its descent back to Earth.
Although it’s impressive, I suspect Elon Musk is engaging in some showmanship here, and not thinking practically.
Otherwise, I don’t understand why they wouldn’t use some sort of glider mechanism to bring it back down, e.g., retractable wings, and then land it horizontally.
Still, that is impressive flight control, especially considering there are no side thrusters to control its position relative to launchpad.