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One of our rockets is missing

1 minute read

SpaceXThe Falcon 9 launching at Canaveral

Well, not missing exactly, but SpaceX needs some help in reconstructing some garbled video footage of its latest Falcon 9 rocket launch.

We’ve posted a couple of videos of SpaceX’s Grasshopper rocket taking off and landing here before, but this concerns the company’s Falcon 9 rocket — a largely reusable vehicle that can parachute back to earth after boosting a resupply capsule to the ISS, for example.

Its last launch, indeed a resupply mission to the ISS, was successful and the first stage "landed softly" and upright in rough seas before being destroyed by the waves. The company is now confident that it can fly and land a first stage back to Cape Canaveral before the end of the year, thus dramatically improving the economics of lobbing things into orbit, but it could do with some video proof of what happened.

However, the video from the first stage received back at Launch Control turned out to be a load of digital garbage. Why seems to be slightly murky, but it looks like the video was relayed back alongside data feeds via a chase plane and, due to rather adverse stormy conditions at the time and subsequent limited bandwidth, the team had to prioritise telemetry over the visuals.

Thus the below video, which SpaceX has posted and asked publicly if anyone can clean up. Of course this is the YouTube version and will thus have been recompressed to its detriment, but the original raw.ts file is available here on the SpaceX website  in case anyone fancies a go at it.

This might be your only chance to be a rocket scientist after all…


Tags: Technology