Video of the Falcon 9 first stage doing a soft splashdown

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Video taken from a chase plane during the July 14 Falcon 9 launch shows the first stage appearing from out of the low clouds, engines firing, vertical and ready for landing. The video, below the fold, also shows the stage slowing just before it hits the water, much like the test vehicles Grasshopper and Falcon 9R do.

Though SpaceX has already claimed their first stage had done this during the July 14 launch, this video proves it. All they need to do now to recover their first stage is to direct it to a land-based landing site.

Hat tip to Doug Messier and Parabolic Arc for this story.



  • mpthompson

    Wow. Just wow.

    Looks to really be barreling down until just before landing when it really slows down. It will be exciting to see when it lands on hard ground.

  • Chris Kirkendall

    That’s just pretty darn cool ! ! You have to admire Musk & SpaceX – people keep telling them they can’t do this, can’t do that, and they just go ahead & do it anyway, proving everyone wrong…

  • Pzatchok

    The only reason NASA keeps saying things like ‘that can;t be done’ is because Bob over in accounting can’t find the paperwork for the left handed screw drivers.
    If he could just find that paperwork the directors would tell the engineers to go ahead and think about the problem and find a solution.
    But until then they can’t do anything. So officially ‘it can’t be done’.

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