Thursday, December 6, 2018
The Christmas turkey is rising rapidly toward the International Space Station, along with cranberry sauce, crystallized yams and the obligatory fruitcake.
SpaceX rocket propeller missed its landing zone on the ground, however, and fell into the sea, just offshore.
Groans filled SpaceX's Mission Control in Hawthorne, Calif., On Wednesday when live video showed the booster was out of control, still far above Cape Canaveral in Florida.
It was the company's first lost ground landing, despite having passed floating barges several times in the past, a harder thing to do.
A SpaceX commentator called it a "bummer," but noted that it was secondary to the Falcon 9's primary missile mission to make the dragon's capsule orbit.
SpaceX boss Elon Musk said the reinforcement appeared to be undamaged.
The hydraulic booster landing flaps apparently stopped, he noticed via Twitter.
The 12 previous landings of SpaceX, which date back to 2015, have been successful.
The disappointment was offset by the success of the Dragon's capsule flight and its 2.5 tons of cargo, which are expected to hit the space station on Saturday.
In addition to smoked turkey breast and all other fixings for Christmas dinner, delivery includes 40 mice and 36,000 worms for aging and muscle studies.