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Bruce Banner

SpaceX, first used rocket to launch today.

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http://www.theverge.com/2017/3/28/15071288/spacex-launch-recycled-falcon-9-rocket-landing-schedule

On Thursday, SpaceX is set to launch yet another satellite into orbit from the Florida coast — but this mission will be far from routine for the company. The Falcon 9 rocket that SpaceX is using for the launch has already flown before. Around the same time last year, it sent cargo to the International Space Station for NASA, and then came back to Earth to land upright on a floating drone ship at sea. This is the first time that SpaceX will attempt to reuse one of its rockets.

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1 hour ago, Neptune said:

Wow, Im impressed with the landing.  Part of me thinks its not real though. It cant be easy to land a rocket like that. And in fact why bother , they cant be saving that much money.

 

Thunderbirds were doing it decades ago.

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1 hour ago, Neptune said:

Wow, Im impressed with the landing.  Part of me thinks its not real though. It cant be easy to land a rocket like that. And in fact why bother , they cant be saving that much money.

SpaceX are said to charge around $60Million for a commercial launch (US gov launches are a lot more, but they ask for a truckload of paperwork).

Estimates for the cost of manufacturing a 1st stage [1] vary wildly. SpaceX is a private company and is discreet on this subject, but experienced observers usually guestimate at a number in the tens of millions of dollars.

Elon Musk (boss of SpaceX) has said several times that the fuel for a launch costs around $200,000.

So if, instead of manufacturing a new first stage for every launch, they can re-use it with minimal refurbishment, then they stand to save tens of millions per launch. Which they either keep (and become stinkingly rich) or pass on to their customers - and transform the space launch market.

[1] It's only the 1st stage that's potentially going to be re-used.

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