For the first time in aerospace history, a rocket, SpaceX’s Falcon 9, returned to space on March 30 from Cape Canaveral, Florida, reaching another milestone for the company which has been working to make its rockets partially reusable since as early as 2011.
Falcon 9 first launched to space on a mission in April 2016 and on its second time, it sent a communications satellite into orbit and then landed on one of SpaceX’s drone ships floating in the Atlantic Ocean.
Falcon 9 first stage has landed on Of Course I Still Love You — world’s first reflight of an orbital class rocket.
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) March 30, 2017
“It means you can fly and refly an orbital class booster, which is the most expensive part of the rocket. This is going to be, ultimately, a huge revolution in spaceflight,” SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said on their accomplishment.
Costing about $62 million, Falcon 9’s relaunch is a kickstarter in SpaceX’s strategy to fly its rockets again and again to partially save on manufacturing costs like that for each mission.
“It’s been 15 years to get to this point, it’s taken us a long time,” Musk furthered. “A lot of difficult steps along the way, but I’m just incredibly proud of the SpaceX for being able to achieve this incredible milestone in the history of space.”