SpaceX launches satellite, but fails to land rocket on barge

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- SpaceX has another launch under its belt, but not another rocket landing.

The unmanned Falcon 9 rocket blasted off at sunset Friday, carrying a broadcasting satellite for Luxembourg-based company SES.

See Full Article

It was the fifth launch attempt over the past 1 1/2 weeks; Sunday's try ended with an engine shutdown a split second before liftoff.

As it has tried before, SpaceX attempted to land the discarded first-stage booster. The target was a barge in the Atlantic, 400 miles offshore. Right before touchdown 10 minutes into the flight, the TV camera on the platform cut out, drawing loud groans from the crowd gathered at company headquarters in Hawthorne, California.

More than a half-hour later, the private company indicated the test was unsuccessful.

SpaceX never expected the test to succeed given the hefty, high-flying payload. This mission required that the booster fly much faster than usual and therefore burn up more fuel, leaving less for a precision touchdown. SpaceX scored a rocket landing on the ground at Cape Canaveral in December, but has yet to nail a trickier floating barge landing.

There were plenty of cheers, though, as the second-stage successfully lifted the satellite higher and higher, and even more when the satellite separated successfully in full camera view.

Company chief Elon Musk reported the target altitude of 40,600 kilometres -- more than 25,000 miles -- was achieved. "Thanks ?åòSES--Satellites for riding on Falcon 9! Looking forward to future missions," he tweeted.

Musk wants to retrieve and refly boosters to save time and money. Usually, the boosters just fall into the sea. SES chief technology officer Martin Halliwell said last week that his company would have "no problem" launching a satellite on a recycled SpaceX rocket.

SpaceX is working to recover from a launch accident last summer shortly after liftoff. It hopes to resume space station deliveries for NASA in the next month or so.



Advertisements

Latest Tech & Science News

  • 11 endangered wild elephants rescued from mud in Cambodia

    Tech & Science CTV News
    PHNOM PENH, Cambodia -- Eleven endangered wild elephants were rescued in Cambodia on Saturday, four days after getting stuck in a 3-meter-deep mud hole, officials said. The animals were rescued in northeastern Mondulkiri province, home to about 250 wild elephants, said Wildlife Alliance official Bothmroath Lebun. Source
  • How lasers, environmentalists and Google combine to reduce methane emissions

    Tech & Science CBC News
    A new project has brought together university researchers, an environmental organization and Google to help find and track methane leaks in U.S. cities. Methane, a natural gas, is commonly used as an energy and heating source, but also makes up about 25 per cent of the greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming. Source
  • Another reason to flip the off switch for Earth Hour: light pollution

    Tech & Science CTV News
    For the 11th year running, cities worldwide will turn their lights off Saturday to mark Earth Hour in a global call to action on climate change. But the moment of darkness should also serve as a reminder, activists say, of another problem that gets far less attention: light pollution. Source
  • Black hole gets unusual 'kick' out of galaxy core thanks to gravitational waves

    Tech & Science CBC News
    A team of international researchers got a bit of a shock recently when a supermassive black hole — something that normally anchors the centre of a galaxy — was spotted speeding away from its home. The reason? Gravitational waves, says the research team. Source
  • Bad breath: Study finds array of bacteria when orcas exhale

    Tech & Science CTV News
    SEATTLE -- When the mighty orca breaks to the surface and exhales, the whale sprays an array of bacteria and fungi in its his breath, scientists said, some good, and some bad such as salmonella. Source
  • Trump's proposed NASA cuts take aim at Earth science

    Tech & Science CBC News
    Officials at NASA were delighted that U.S. President Donald Trump's budget proposal allocates $19.1 billion for the agency, down only 0.8 per cent from last year, but the proposal also cuts several programs to study the Earth. Source
  • 'Call of Duty' gamers converge on Toronto for national championship

    Tech & Science CTV News
    TORONTO -- Many people have a go-to tool at work. For Andrew Ivers, it's a KBAR-32 this weekend. The 19-year-old from Toronto is a professional gamer who hopes to use his virtual assault rifle to help Team GIRG win the Cineplex WorldGaming "Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare" tournament final Sunday. Source
  • Apple: Software flaws in latest WikiLeaks docs are all fixed

    Tech & Science CTV News
    NEW YORK -- Apple said purported hacking vulnerabilities disclosed by WikiLeaks this week have all been fixed in recent iPhones and Mac computers. The documents released by the anti-secrecy site Thursday morning pointed to an apparent CIA program to hack Apple devices using techniques that users couldn't disable by resetting their devices. Source
  • Spacewalking astronauts prep space station for new parking spot

    Tech & Science CBC News
    ?Spacewalking astronauts prepped the International Space Station on Friday for a new parking spot reserved for commercial crew capsules. The 402-kilometre-high complex already has one docking port in place for the SpaceX Crew Dragon and Boeing Starliner, which should start carrying up astronauts as early as next year. Source
  • Skin powered by the sun? Prosthetic limbs with better sense of touch being developed

    Tech & Science CBC News
    Amputees with prosthetic limbs may soon have much a better sense of touch, temperature and texture, thanks to the energy-saving power of the sun, British researchers said on Thursday. While prosthetics are usually fully powered using batteries, a new prototype from University of Glasgow researchers opens up the possibility for so-called "solar-powered skin," which would include better sense capabilities than current technology. Source