SpaceX Falcon Heavy to Attempt Triple Booster Landing

Falcon Heavy on the pad 1 photo
Photo: SpaceX
On February 6, 2018, SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket lifted off from Florida, taking to space its historic cargo: a Tesla Roadster. After their job was done, the three boosters of the rocket were supposed to land on land and at sea. They only partially succeeded.
At the time, two of the boosters landed in near perfect sync on their designated pads at Cape Canaveral. The third was supposed to do the same at sea, on one of SpaceX’s drone ships, the Of Course I Still Love You.

Because of insufficient ignition fluid needed to light the outer two engines and ensure the controlled descent of the booster, it came down like a hammer, smashing into the sea at 300 mph and damaging the drone ship.

Sometime this week, should the weather allow it, the Falcon Heavy will depart on its second-ever mission, taking to orbit the Arabsat 6A satellite. Already postponed several times, the launch will also mean another shot at a successful triple landing.

Just as they did in February last year, the two side boosters will be heading for their designated landing areas at the Cape, while the third will once again head for the Of Course I Still Love You and hope for the best.

In addition to the booster landings, SpaceX will try and catch the two pieces of the fairing as they fall toward the ocean.

If successful, SpaceX will write another huge chapter in the history books of space exploration. The company will be the only one to have an operating, nearly fully recoverable rocket of this size in use.

The Falcon Heavy is made up of three boosters, each fitted with Falcon 9 nine-engine cores. Combined, the three generate 5 million pounds of thrust.

The second launch of the Falcon Heavy is scheduled for 5 PM Pacific time on April 11.
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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