F9R Dev takeoff

SpaceX's F9R Dev test vehicle takes off from its pad at the company's McGregor development site Thursday.

I finally got to see one.

SpaceX's F9R Dev โ€” the modified Falcon 9 first stage that's a bigger sibling to SpaceX's Grasshopper testbed rocket โ€” flew a second time Thursday at the company's McGregor development facility, two weeks after its first free flight.

The test is another step in SpaceX's drive to produce a recoverable and reusable first stage, which saw another leap forward with the successful splashdown of the actual Falcon 9 first stage after it launched the Dragon cargo ship toward the International Space Station.

I can't get much more specific because SpaceX hasn't talked about the test yet (that usually happens after a day or two). As near as I could tell (which turned out to be very poorly indeed โ€” see this update) it flew to the same 800-foot height that it did two weeks ago, and took the same type of course: up, hover, move sideways, land.

More as I get it.

Get Trib headlines sent directly to you, every day.

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.
Load comments