This morning on Twitter, SpaceX founder Elon Musk posted this video of the Falcon 9 reusable (F9R) rocket making a successful first flight. It ascended to approximately 250 meters before returning back to Earth vertically, on its own "legs." The video was filmed using a hexacopter drone.


The Falcon 9 carries the unmanned Dragon Spacecraft, which has been used for International Space Station resupply missions, including one scheduled for this afternoon using the Falcon 9 V1.1 rocket. The Dragon was the first private spacecraft to visit the I.S.S. The new F9R rocket is essentially the same as the V1.1, but has legs which collapse during flight, and then expand on landing to allow it to be re-used. Musk originally shared the reusable rocket plan in 2011. The standard Falcon 9 V1.1 costs $50-60 million according to

Illustration for article titled Reusable SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket Makes Successful First Flight

At the center of the photo, we see the legs of the F9R, which are collapsed. (SpaceX)

On Monday this week, SpaceX signed a 20-year lease to use and maintain historic launch pad 39A at Florida's Kennedy Space Center, which has been is use since the Apollo moon missions.

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