Falcon 9 B1051, The Leader of the Pack

Space Coast, FL – SpaceX launched their Falcon 9 B1051 rocket booster this morning. It was yet another batch of 60 Starlink satellites. However, a huge milestone came with this successful launch and landing of this Falcon 9 rocket.

Roughly 9 hours prior to launch Falcon 9 B1051 perched at SLC-40
Roughly 9 hours prior to launch Falcon 9 B1051 perched at SLC-40 | Photo: Jon Van Horne

Falcon 9 B1051 hits Ten

At 0242 EDT on May 9, 2021 the Falcon 9 rocket booster B1051 launched for it's tenth time. It also landed for it's tenth time on the ASDS Just Read The Instruction in the Atlantic Ocean. The rocket booster is due to return to Port Canaveral, Florida in 48-72 hours. Tug Fin Falgout will being towing the droneship.

Nine roaring Merlin engines at lift off from SLC-40 on Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida
Nine roaring Merlin engines at lift off from SLC-40 on Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida | Photo: Crystal Gabriel

The reusability of SpaceX Falcon 9 rockets is unmatched. The nine previous missions of this particular Falcon 9 rocket includes: Crew Dragon’s first demonstration mission (DM-1) to the International Space Station, the RADARSAT Constellation Mission, SXM-7, and now seven Starlink missions.

Long exposure photo of the Falcon 9 Starlink L27 mission from Titusville, FL
Long exposure photo of the Falcon 9 Starlink L27 mission from Titusville, FL | Photo: Jon Van Horne

The closest Falcon 9 rocket in the amount of reusability is B1049. Which has launched and landed nine times and is currently in Port Canaveral. The rocket booster is undergoing processing for transport and will be taken back to SpaceX facilities at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station for refurbishing.

According to SpaceX, Falcon 9 rockets will be used as many times they can until the hardware is deemed unflyable. Now, we'll just have to wait and see exactly how many times that will be.

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