Tesla owner Elon Musk's Space X has become the second company in the world to launch and land a reusable rocket after the company's Falcon 9 blasted off from Florida on Monday, December 21 and landed the reusable first stage ten minutes later.
Musk's Falcon 9 is the world's second reusable rocket to sucessfully launch and land after the Jeff Bezos owned Blue Origin achieved the feat in November. Bezos who also owns Amazon, tweeted out his congratulations to the Space X team, a few minutes after Falcon 9 landed.
Congrats @SpaceX on landing Falcon's suborbital booster stage. Welcome to the club!— Jeff Bezos (@JeffBezos) December 22, 2015
The Falcon 9 used for the the launch is an upgraded version of the rocket and stands 23 storeys tall. It's first stage is powered by nine merlin engines that produce 1.5 million pounds of thrust and burns for 162 seconds. The second stage is powered by a single Merlin engine that produces 210,000 pounds of force and is used to bring the final payload into the desired orbit.
The first stage of the Falcon 9 landed back on earth at Cape Canevarel 10 minutes after the launch while the second stage continued into space where it deployed 11 ORBCOMM satellites into their respective orbits.
Elon Musk then sent out two tweets as he first announced his happiness to the world and then showed an image of the Falcon 9's first stage on the landing pad at Cape Canavarel.
11 satellites deployed to target orbit and Falcon has landed back at Cape Canaveral. Headed to LZ-1. Welcome back, baby!— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 22, 2015
Falcon 9 standing on LZ-1 at Cape Canaveral pic.twitter.com/RZdfcH0exW— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 22, 2015