SpaceX successfully launched and then retrieved its first recycled rocket

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  • SpaceX successfully launched and then retrieved its first recycled rocket, a historic feat and the biggest leap yet in its bid to drive down costs and speed up flights.

  • It was the first time SpaceX founder Elon Musk tried to fly a booster that soared before an orbital mission.

  • He was at a loss for words after the Falcon 9 core landed on the bull’s-eye of the ocean platform following lift-off with a broadcasting satellite.

  • Mr. Musk foresees dozens, if not hundreds of repeat flights, for a booster and rocket turnarounds of as little as 24 hours, perhaps by next year.

  • Land, refuel and then back up again, with everything leading to one day putting humanity “out there among the stars.”

  • This particular first stage landed on an ocean platform almost exactly a year ago after a space station launch for NASA.

  • SpaceX refurbished and tested the 15-story booster, still sporting its nine original engines. It nailed another vertical landing at sea once it was finished boosting the satellite for the SES company of Luxembourg.

  • SpaceX employees outside jammed Mission Control at the Hawthorne, California, company headquarters cheered loudly every step of the way and again when the satellite reached its proper orbit.

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