SpaceX, the aerospace company of Elon Musk, has for the first time managed to catch both halves of the fairing of a launched Falcon 9 rocket with ships. Until now, that only worked with one of the two halves.
Elon Musk announced on Twitter that it absorbing both parts it worked. As in previous attempts, the company used ships with large nets to collect the parts, which caught the fairing halves descending on parachutes.
This collection was already successful, but there was always at least one half that ended up in the sea, even though the halves that ended up in the water were also picked up and sometimes used again at a later time at a launch. Collecting them in nets saves a lot of time and costs to use them again at the next launch.
This fairing came from a Falcon 9 missile launching the Anasis II satellite successfully in orbit. This is a military communications satellite for South Korea. The first rocket stage landed successfully on Just Read the Instructions, the dedicated drone ship. With this vertical landing, SpaceX now has a total of 57 successful first stage landings.
The booster that SpaceX deployed and landed again at the current launch also flew 51 days ago. Then the first rocket stage was deployed for the famous Demo-2 flight, launching two astronauts from US soil to the ISS with the Crew Dragon capsule.
Half of the noseband on a Falcon 9 costs about $ 6 million, and re-deploying it helps further reduce the cost per launch. Succeeding in catching can also contribute to the achievement of one Musk’s previously disclosed plan, namely to make the ships with the nets suitable to accommodate Crew Dragon capsules, so that astronauts returning from the ISS do not have to land in the ocean.
Photo taken ahead of the launch of the Anasis-II satellite, showing Comet Neowise