Stunning side-by-side video released of SpX-6 rocket landing attempt
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla — Hawthorne, California-based Space Exploration Technologies, more commonly known as SpaceX, has released some impressive video during the company’s 13-year history. A recent one shows a Falcon 9 v1.1, having completed its primary mission of sending a Dragon spacecraft on its way to the International Space Station, attempting to land on a platform off the Florida Coast on April 14, 2015. The craft, dubbed the “Just Read The Instructions” Autonomous Spaceport Drone Ship by SpaceX’s CEO and Founder Elon Musk, helped to gather video from the attempt as well.
In the video, the booster’s first stage can be see descending out of the sky toward the drone ship, its various thrusters and engines working to steer it to a landing on the floating platform. Just when it seems that all is well and the flight will enter the history books, it becomes obvious that the rocket’s first stage is leaning too far over, it drops, hitting the deck of the ship and explodes.
One thing that the video makes clear is that SpaceX is gaining experience with each passing mission. During the January landing attempt, the first stage used section of the rocket struck the ship, careened over the side and exploded. This time, according to Musk, the rocket had too much “lateral thrust”, where the rocket’s momentum was too much for the thrusters to compensate for. The video below was constructed from side-by-side footage collected by a chase aircraft and from on board the “Just Read The Instructions” itself.
Video courtesy of SpaceX / Upload
Jason Rhian spent several years honing his skills with internships at NASA, the National Space Society and other organizations. He has provided content for outlets such as: Aviation Week & Space Technology, Space.com, The Mars Society and Universe Today.