(CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla.) — The ambitious SpaceX rocket recycling attempt fell short last month, but the company is ready to try again this Sunday when it blasts a climate satellite into space.
The Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) will be carried into space with the help of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. The climate satellite is a joint project of NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Air Force.
The 22-story Falcon rocket carrying the satellite is scheduled to blast off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida shortly after sunset at 6:10 p.m. ET on Sunday.
Shortly after liftoff, the rocket is set to detach from the payload and begin a controlled descent to Earth, with the goal of executing a pinpoint landing onto a drone ship in the Atlantic. It will be the second rocket recycling attempt for SpaceX, coming one month after it came close to pulling off the historic feat.
After launching its Dragon capsule to the International Space Station, founder Elon Musk and his team watched as the rocket booster came hurtling toward the bull’s-eye target on the barge.
The rocket came close, but landed hard at a 45-degree angle, smashing its legs and engine section, making for a spectacular and fiery landing.
Musk is intent on making the rocket recycling test work and has said he believes it will “revolutionize access to space.”
“If one can figure out how to effectively reuse rockets just like airplanes, the cost of access to space will be reduced by as much as a factor of a hundred,” he has said.
Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
Recent posts in National News