SpaceX rocket still floating in Atlantic Ocean after botched ground landing

SpaceX Launches 20th Rocket

But even with the landing not going as planned, Insprucker emphasized the successful launch.

It was SpaceX's sixth outright landing failure and the first since June 2016, ending a string of 32 successful recoveries, 20 on droneships, 11 on land at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida and one at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California.

The mission was SpaceX's 16th mission for NASA as part of a long-term contract to ferry supplies to space.

The founder of SpaceX Elon Musk has published on Twitter a video with the fall of the first stage of the rocket Falcon 9 in the Atlantic ocean.

But the tall portion of the rocket missed its goal of securing an upright landing on the solid ground at Cape Canaveral's Landing Zone 1.

The first stage rocket had separated normally several minutes after the lift-off, but as it approached the landing site, it started spinning rapidly.

The rocket engines compensated somewhat for the spin, and by the time the rocket hit the water, its fin had emerged. "Appears to be undamaged & is transmitting data. Ships en route to rescue Falcon", he wrote. Instead, the spent booster will likely contribute in a different way: by providing SpaceX a reason to redesign its hydraulic system.

Ocean platform landings have proven a bit trickier, but SpaceX has managed to stick the landing, whether on land or sea, 32 times in all.

The bad food was replaced ahead of Wednesday's launch. The main aim of the mission was a success, delivering the supplies to the orbiting space lab.

The Dragon spacecraft, carrying almost 3 tons of science and supplies, is scheduled to rendezvous with the International Space Station on Saturday.

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