The News Today
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11.20.19
Spinning in Space

Watch a Piece of a SpaceX Rocket Careen Back Down to Earth

November 8th 19__Victor Tangermann__Filed Under: Off World
SpaceX

Heavy Fairings

SpaceX has released an amazing video that shows half of a nose cone from a Falcon Heavy rocket, also known as a “fairing,” plummet back down to Earth. The giant piece of metal — used to give the rocket its aerodynamic shape — will be reused during a Falcon 9 launch early next week, according to the space company.

In the video, taken back in April, you can see one half of the fairing separate from the rocket’s payload, an Arabsat-6A communications satellite. As the fairing spins, you can see the Earth swoop by below.

Like a Glove

SpaceX has been making progress in gently catching its nose cones using special net-wielding boats. The company managed the incredible feat for the first time back in June after launching its massive Falcon Heavy rocket.

The two nose cone halves in the video, however, splashed into the ocean to be retrieved later.

SpaceX has made major strides in making almost every part of its rockets reusable. Next week, a Falcon 9 will carry 60 of the company’s Starlink internet satellites into space, marking the first time a Falcon 9 first-stage booster has been used four times.

READ MORE: Whoa! Incredible Video Shows a SpaceX Rocket Fairing Plunging into the Ocean [Space.com]

More on SpaceX: Elon Musk: SpaceX Launches Will Cost 1% of Current NASA Launches