SpaceX launches Dragon Cargo Ship, Rocket Landing for the First Time Failed

The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket blasted off carrying the Dragon spacecraft at Cape Canaveral on Dec. 5 2018

The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket blasted off carrying the Dragon spacecraft at Cape Canaveral on Dec. 5 2018

SpaceX has failed to land its Falcon 9 rocket on its landing pad at Cape Canaveral for the first time since it began recovering its Falcon 9 rockets.

It represents SpaceX's 16th commercial resupply services mission.

If that first test of the unpiloted SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon spacecraft goes well, a second test will fly astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley to the International Space Station in June.

It's not every Friday that a 156-foot-tall SpaceX rocket booster is towed to Port Canaveral.

Musk also posted the video of the first stage's descent, which showed it spinning as it fell to Earth, how its spin rate was slowly arrested with correctional thrusts, and how it touched down on the ocean and fell sideways into the water.

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"Appears to be undamaged and is transmitting data".

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk shared video on Twitter Wednesday of the rocket engines stabilizing the booster just in time for a splash landing soft enough to save it. "Ships en route to rescue Falcon", he wrote. Until today, the company's most recent landing failure happened in summer 2016.

Ocean platform landings have proven a bit trickier, but SpaceX has managed to stick the landing, whether on land or sea, 32 times in all. The mice and their habitat were loaded into spacecraft shortly before launch, but the spoiled food had to be replaced ahead of launch. The main aim of the mission was a success, delivering the supplies to the orbiting space lab.

The Dragon is carrying more than 56-hundred pounds of supplies and payloads to the International Space Station, including critical materials to directly support more than 250 science and research investigations.

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