Since we last checked in with SpaceX, they’ve been busy. We’ve all been anxiously awaiting another launch of their reusable rocket. Recently, SpaceX released a glimpse of its first rocket-landing site on dry land in a picture at Florida’s Cape Canaveral Air Force Station that reads “Landing Complex 1.” They also released pictures of the company’s next Dragon cargo spacecraft.
This “Landing Complex 1” photo is of the site that was formerly known as Launch Complex 13; they are now converting the complex into a landing pad for the reusable Falcon 9 and the Falcon Heavy rocket stages that the company is developing. The landing complex isn’t ready for use yet, but SpaceX is making great progress towards it. In the previous Dragon cargo mission in January, SpaceX tried to land a Falcon 9 first stage on an autonomous spaceport drone ship in the Atlantic. While the rocket stage did hit its target, it landed too hard and exploded.
If you’re looking ahead to the next Dragon mission, it’s scheduled right around the corner. The next Dragon mission to the International Space Station is scheduled to blast off atop a Falcon 9 on April 10 from Cape Canaveral. At that time, Musk has said that SpaceX will again attempt the drone-ship landing.
As seen, developing these reusable rockets is a key priority for SpaceX. Musk has huge hopes for the opportunities that this technology can bring. He believes that such technology could cut the cost of spaceflight exponentially and perhaps even make Mars colonization possible.
We’ll be watching on April 10th for the next launch and are hoping for a great success for this next SpaceX reusable rocket launch! Who else will be tuning in? Any other insights about what this new technology could mean for the future of space travel? Comment below!