From the recent success of the SpaceX Falcon 9 launch and subsequent landing of the first stage rocket booster, space flight has been changed. The future of space flight will become more like an airline, reusing vehicles regularly. It’s been a long time coming, and it still has a long way to go, but it’s heading in the right direction. SpaceX recently released video footage of the landing in full.
Even though the landing was a secondary goal to the mission, which also launched over a dozen ORBCOMM telecommunications satellites into Earth orbit, it was the newsmaker. It took a 60 million dollar booster and made it reuseable, cutting it’s overall cost. To refurbish and refuel the rocket, it costs only 1.5 Million dollars.
The next step for SpaceX is to take the Falcon 9 booster and prep it for another launch. This will mark another milestone in spaceflight and set the stage for more ambitious goals in rocketry, including manned missions.