SpaceX Grasshopper Rocket Triples Previous Leap

By  //  April 25, 2013

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Shatters Previous Record

(VIDEO: spacexchannel·)

BREVARD COUNTY • KENNDY SPACE CENTER, FLORIDA – Another test and another first.

The SpaceX Grasshopper rocket tripled its previous altitude record rising to 820 feet and hovering before returning to its launch pad on Monday. (Image courtesy of SpaceX)

The SpaceX Grasshopper rocket tripled its previous altitude record rising to 820 feet and hovering before returning to its launch pad on Monday. (Image courtesy of SpaceX)

SpaceX’s Grasshopper flew 820 feet in a test flight on Monday tripling its altitude of a March leap.

The Grasshopper is a 10-story Vertical Takeoff Vertical Landing (VTVL) rocket that SpaceX engineers have designed to test the systems required to return a rocket back to Earth intact for further use

While most rockets are designed to burn up in the atmosphere during re-entry, SpaceX’s rockets of the future are now designed to return to the launch pad for a vertical landing.

SpaceX tested the rocket ship again in Texas with spectacular results.

On March 7, a SpaceX test of the Grasshopper rose 260 feet and hovered before returning to its launch pad.

But Monday’s test flight, which was the fifth so far for the rocket, ascended to 820 feet and held in place at that altitude.

And it came “against wind, before returning squarely to the launch pad, according to a Tweet from SpaceX founder Elon Musk.

Further tests are planned for the Grasshopper this summer.


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