When Space X tried to land the first stage of its Falcon 9 booster rocket last week on a barge in the ocean, they attempted to revolutionize space travel. Instead, they ended up creating an amazing video.
In the vine below, Space X is attempting to land the rocket on a huge barge, thereby making the rocket reusable for future missions and cutting launch costs in half. But the hydraulic fluid controlling the fins of the rocket runs out just before touchdown, sending the rocket in at an angle and well.... it all ends with a bang.
SpaceX will attempt the maneuver again when it launches a satellite in a few weeks and this time, they'll include more hydraulic fluid.
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk explained the explosion in a series of tweets, condensed here:
"Before impact, fins lose power and go hardover. Engines fights to restore, but … Rocket hits hard at ~45 deg angle, smashing legs and engine section. Residual fuel and oxygen combine … Full RUD (rapid unscheduled disassembly) event. Ship is fine minor repairs. Exciting day! … Next rocket landing on drone ship in 2 to 3 weeks w way more hydraulic fluid. At least it shd [should] explode for a diff reason."
Photos by SpaceX