SpaceX's second Falcon 9 rocket launch successful

By reducing launch costs, space becomes much more accessible to enterprises with limited resources.
By Dirk Trudeau | Jun 26, 2017
For the second time, Elon Musk's SpaceX has successfully launched a commercial communications satellite and then landed a recycled Falcon 9 rocket booster.

The rocket took off at 3:10 p.m. EDT on June 23 and then delivered Bulgaria's first telecommunications satellite into orbit more than 22, 000 miles into the heavens, according to Business Insider.

The huge refurbished first-stage rocket booster safely touched down on a SpaceX drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean. It had previously flown in January when it landed on an autonomous ship in the Pacific.

At first, Musk did not think the booster would survive the landing.

"Falcon 9 will experience its highest ever reentry force and heat in today's launch," wrote Musk in a tweet. "Good chance rocket booster doesn't make it back."

Then, shortly after the rocket booster landed, Musk was back on Twitter.

"Rocket is extra toasty and hit the deck hard (used almost all of the emergency crush core), but otherwise good," he tweeted shortly after it landed.

The ability to reuse rocket parts is critical to bringing down launch costs when building them costs millions of dollars. According to Musk, a Falcon 9 booster counts for up to 70 percent of the cost of the entire rocket to the company.

By reducing launch costs, space becomes much more accessible to enterprises with limited resources.

"People don't realize that, for small countries and small companies like us, without SpaceX, there was no way we would ever be able to even think about space," says Maxim Zayakov, CEO of BulgariaSat, as reported by Business Insider. "With [SpaceX], it was possible. We got a project. I think, in the future, it's going to be even more affordable because of reusability."


Have something to say? Let us know in the comments section or send an email to the author. You can share ideas for stories by contacting us here.

Comments should take into account that readers may hold different opinions. With that in mind, please make sure comments are respectful, insightful, and remain focused on the article topic.