This week, SpaceX from Cape Canaveral productively blasted off a Falcon 9 aircraft. This was the 3rd flight for this specific Falcon 9, and its operation was to transport the AMOS-17 satellite for Spacecom. The launch was further assisted by a tweet from Elon Musk. He shared quick footage of a SpaceX aircraft catching the fairing of the rocket in a net as it dropped from space.
The fairing is employed to protect the rocket at the time of takeoff, but once it leaves the planet, the fairing divides in half and drops on the ground. SpaceX aims to catch the pieces of the fairing, which are meant to drop over the region in Atlantic. In test runs, the firm split the fairing from a helicopter, but the net did not catch it always.
SpaceX managed to productively catch a fairing after a launch previous month, and this is the first time users have seen what that seems like. As the media claimed, this is a victory for the firm, which aims to recycle the fairings. Musk earlier claimed that the firm fundamentally throws $6 Million away every time a fairing collides into the ocean. Rocket Lab (SpaceX rival) aims to catch its first-phase engines using helicopters, but media have not seen it quite yet do so.
On a related note, after finishing zero of two attempts for launch earlier, SpaceX went 2 on 2 after that. Its Starhopper test vehicle took a small untethered route from its test pad in Texas, while its Dragon aircraft is making a 3rd trip to the ISS. Elon Musk earlier posted on Tweeter “Water towers *can* fly haha!!,” then, more seriously, confirmed that a 200m test is scheduled to occur “in a week or two.”