In a landmark feat, the US space company SpaceX has successfully landed an unmanned rocket upright – the first time such a feat has been accomplished.
According to BBC, the Falcon-9 rocket booster despatched 11 communications satellites before returning to an upright position at Cape Canaveral. The achievement has been hailed as milestone towards reusing rockets.
Reuters reported that the successful mission, capped by delivery of all 11 satellites to orbit for launch customer ORBCOMM Inc, unfolded in just over 30 minutes and marked a pivotal reversal of fortunes for privately owned Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX, founded by high-tech entrepreneur Elon Musk.
It is hoped the mission will boost moves to reduce the cost of private space operations.
The launch of a rocket is the first by SpaceX since one exploded in June.
The flawless launch on Monday is a major success for privately-owned Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX, the California-based company set up and run by high-tech entrepreneur Elon Musk.
Mr Musk has said the ability to return its rockets to Earth so they can be reused and reflown would hugely reduce his company’s operational costs in the growing but highly competitive private space launch industry.