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Recycled Rocket Back On Solid Ground

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lands on a barge at sea for the second time. Photo: SpaceX

A recycled SpaceX rocket is back on solid ground after landing on a barge last week. It’s the second time SpaceX has launched and landed the booster.

A drone ship carrying the first of the company’s recycled rocket fleet docked at Port Canaveral after last week’s launch.

SpaceX founder Elon Musk says the almost 14-story-tall booster could fly again, but it will go on display instead. “We think this one has some historic value,” said Musk, “so we’re seeing if maybe the Cape might want to have it.”

The private space company wants to launch and land up to 6 recycled rockets this year. SpaceX secured a lease with Port Canaveral to build a facility to refurbish the rocket parts.

SpaceX says re-using parts of the rocket will lower the cost of launching stuff into orbit. The booster accounts for about 70 percent of the cost of launching, Musk said.

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Brendan Byrne

About Brendan Byrne

Space Reporter and 'Intersection' Producer

Brendan covers space news for WMFE, everything from rocket launches to the latest scientific discoveries in our universe. He hosts "Are We There Yet?", WMFE's space exploration podcast He also helps produce WMFE's twice-weekly public affairs show "Intersection," working with host Matthew Peddie to shape the ... Read Full Bio »