SpaceX Loses Falcon Heavy's Center Booster Due to Rough Seas

SpaceX Loses Falcon Heavy's Center Booster Due to Rough Seas

SpaceX aced a triple-landing of its Falcon Heavy booster rockets after launching its first-ever commercial cargo into orbit last week.

In an April 15 statement, SpaceX said that the booster core, one of three on the Falcon Heavy rocket, was unable to remain upright over the weekend because heavy seas prevented crews from securing the booster to the deck of the droneship Of Course I Still Love You in the Atlantic Ocean.

"As conditions worsened with eight to ten foot swells, the booster began to shift and ultimately was unable to remain upright", the company said Tuesday.

A step further, the US Air Force recently indicated that Falcon Heavy Flight 3 - carrying its Space Test Program 2 (STP-2) rideshare mission - would indeed reuse both of this launch's side boosters but would feature a brand new center core.

SpaceX landed a very big fish but was unable to reel it in.

SpaceX's first successful commercial mission came off nearly without a hitch last week.

'We have landed the center core for the first time, ' a SpaceX announcer said.

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Musk says custom devices to secure the booster weren't ready in time for this second flight of the Falcon Heavy. Falcon Heavy's core doesn't have the same setup so it could not be nailed down.

After liftoff, CEO Elon Musk confirmed that the rocket's fairing halves - or nose cone that protects the spacecraft - were recovered and will be used for an internal mission known as "Starlink" later this year.

Falcon Heavy Flight 3 is now scheduled to launch the USAF STP-2 mission no earlier than late June, with current information available to a major customer with satellites aboard pointing towards NET June 22.

The two outer Falcon Heavy cores were recovered and touched down on concrete landing pads at Cape Canaveral.

The Dragon spacecraft are used as the final stage of SpaceX missions to resupply the International Space Station. Of course, SpaceX has only had a handful of days with its recovered Block 5 side boosters, the refurbishment of which will now be the critical path for launch.

During its first Falcon Heavy launch in February 2018, the firm landed two of the firms side boosters simultaneously on separate launchpads.

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