On June 12, SpaceX launched another Falcon 9 rocket. As part of the Transporter-8 mission, it successfully launched 72 satellites provided by various customers into orbit. But this event turned out to be notable not for the payload, but for the round figure. The fact is that within its framework, SpaceX has already landed an orbital rocket stage for the 200th time.
Since the development of the Falcon 9, SpaceX has been aiming to return its first stages to Earth to reuse them. Initially, it was supposed to use a combination of a light thermal protective coating and parachutes for this. But this strategy did not justify itself. The Falcon 9 stages were destroyed in the atmosphere even before the parachutes opened.
After that, SpaceX made a bet on a controlled landing using engines. It took the company several years of tests to work out the procedure and make the necessary changes to the design of the rocket. The first successful landing of the Falcon 9 on land took place on December 21, 2015. The first successful landing on a barge was on April 8, 2016.
Since then, SpaceX has already carried out a total of 200 first-stage landings. According to the company’s statement, approximately 90% of launches since the beginning of 2022 have used previously flown boosters, which have completed more than 100 missions during this time.
It is also worth noting that the last launch was already the 40th SpaceX mission in 2023. On average, the company now carries out a new orbital launch every four days.
Earlier we talked about the most interesting facts about SpaceX rockets.
Follow us on Twitter to get the most interesting space news in time