SpaceX Thrice Flown and Landed 1st Stage from Starlink Sails into Port Canaveral: Photos

UpClose with Octagrabber
arms grasping upright thrice flown/landed 

Falcon
9 booster 1049.3 standing upright on the OCISLY droneship from
SpaceX
Starlink 1
 launch May 23,
2019 arrived in Port Canaveral, FL around noontime May 28.
Credit: Ken
Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

Ken
Kremer —
SpaceUpClose.com &
RocketSTEM
– 29 May 2019



PORT CANAVERAL/CAPE CANAVERAL AIR FORCE
STATION, FL –  SpaceX’s thrice flown and
thrice landed Falcon 9 first stage from last weeks Starlink 1 launch sailed
into Port Canaveral at lunchtime Tuesday basking in the glow of the Sunshine
states bright sun – 4 days after it soared aloft from Cape
Canaveral Air Force Station and successfully delivered the first 60 Starlink
broadband satellites to LEO.



Standing fully upright and firmly grasped by
the arms of the specially designed Octagrabber restraining device atop the “Of
Course I Still Love You” (OCISLY) droneship upon which it accomplished a
precision guided, rocket assisted smooth touchdown the recovered 156 foot tall
spent booster with four fully deployed landing legs sailed into the mouth of Port
Canaveral around 11:30 a.m. EDT.

SpaceX naval
fleet towing thrice flown/landed 
Falcon 9 booster 1049.3 from Starlink 1 launch May
23 enters Port Canaveral at 1130 a.m. EDT May 28
, 2019. Tug Hollywood towed the Falcon 9 landed
upright on the OCISLY droneship as onlookers watch from Jetty Park Pier, FL. 
Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

A crowd of onlookers and space media friends eagerly
awaited the rockets triumphant arrival as the SpaceX naval fleet led by tug
Hollywood towed the recycled Falcon 9 first stage erect on OCISLY past the port
channels entryway at Jetty Park Pier.



Enjoy our Space UpClose photo gallery of the arrival and
docking of Falcon 9 booster 1049.3 at the droneships normal berthing port.



Check back as our gallery grows.

SpaceX naval
fleet towing thrice flown/landed 
Falcon 9 booster 1049.3 from Starlink 1 launch May
23 enters Port Canaveral at 1130 a.m. EDT May 28
, 2019 in
this overhead view from Exploration Tower.

Tug Hollywood towed the Falcon 9 landed upright on the OCISLY droneship.  Credit: Ken
Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

Liftoff of the Starlink 1 mission finally took place at 10:30
p.m. EDT Thursday, May 23 (0230 GMT Friday) from
Space Launch Complex-40 (SLC-40) on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL.



Eight minutes later the Falcon 9 first stage successfully made
a precision rocket assisted intact and upright touchdown on the ‘Of Course I Still
Love You’ droneship prepositioned in the Atlantic Coast off the Carolinas. 



Falcon 9’s first stage
for this mission previously supported the Telstar 18 VANTAGE mission in
September 2018 and the Iridium-8 mission in January 2019. 
Tug Hollywood tows thrice flown/landed Falcon 9 booster
1049.3 from 
Starlink 1 launch May 23 entering Port Canaveral, FL
at 1130 a.m. EDT May 28
, 2019 as it sails by Jetty Park Pier.  Credit: Ken
Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

To my eyes the triply launched and landed
first stage was
NOT excessively
charred compared to my prelaunch photos taken at launch 
pad 40.



The SpaceX workers had
cleaned off much of the charry soot from the booster exterior core to create a
regular series of nearly white rectangular boxes aligned on top of one another from
top to bottom – that were easily visible in my last prelaunch photos.



The rectangular boxes were
easily visible as the 1st stage was towed in and appeared to be only
slightly darker following the third launch and landing.



Perhaps SpaceX engineers
conducted an experiment to more easily measure the amount of new soot deposited
via a side by side comparison using the cleaned vs uncleaned spots. 
SpaceX naval
fleet towing thrice flown/landed 
Falcon 9 booster 1049.3 from Starlink 1 launch May
23 enters Port Canaveral at 1130 a.m. EDT May 28
, 2019 in
this overhead view from Exploration Tower.

Tug Hollywood towed the Falcon 9 landed upright on the OCISLY droneship.  Credit: Ken
Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com
Overall it took about 30 minutes
from Port arrival to docking of OCISLY at its normal berthing port. Everything
appeared to go very well. 

Its quite possible that this
Block 5 version booster will be launched a fourth time. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk
has stated that the Block 5 is designed for 10 or more recycled launches.

UpClose with Octagrabber
arms grasping upright thrice flown/landed 


Falcon 9 booster
1049.3 standing
upright on the
OCISLY droneship
from
SpaceX Starlink 1 launch May 23, 2019 arrived in Port
Canaveral, FL around noontime May 28 –
in this overhead
view from Exploration Tower.
Credit:
Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com

The jettisoned payload fairings were both recovered
after parachute assisted splashdown, hauled out of the Atlantic Ocean and
sailed into Port Canaveral, Sunday, May 26. See our story/photos.  



OCISLY docked nearby the fairings.
Tugboats towed recovered SpaceX
Falcon 9 booster landed atop OCISLY
into Port Canaveral and nudged it into berthing spot at Noon May 28, as yellow
hoisting crane and BLLRD cap awaits ship to shore duty just hours later at 4 PM
ET. From Starlink 1 launch May 23.
Credit: Ken
Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com
Watch for my follow-up
articles and galleries about the craning and leg detachments. 

The landing legs
were not retracted this time round- likely since the legs were recycled and not
suited for retraction due to aerodynamic stresses as did occur last time on the CRS-17 mission earlier in
May. 
UpClose with Octagrabber
arms grasping upright thrice flown/landed 


Falcon 9 booster
1049.3 standing
upright on the
OCISLY droneship
from
SpaceX Starlink 1 launch May 23, 2019 arrived in Port
Canaveral, FL around noontime May 28 –
in this overhead
view from Exploration Tower.
Credit:
Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com
Thrice flown/landed Falcon 9 booster
1049.3 from 
Starlink 1 launch May 23 towed into Port Canaveral,
FL at 11:30 a.m. EDT May 28
, 2019 as onlookers observe in
Jetty Park.
Note the white rectangular
boxes intentionally clean off prelaunch- appeared only somewhat more sooty post
launch. Recovered SpaceX Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com/spaceupclose.com
SpaceX’s highly anticipated Starlink broadband
constellation has begun with the 1st blastoff of the inaugural batch of 60 satellites
on the firms Falcon 9  rocket on what
turned out to be the third try on May 23 as the recycled Falcon 9 rocket soared
to space. 


In the not to distant future the Starlink constellation
will grow to many thousands of next generation satellites that could very will revolutionize
the way the world accesses and uses the internet in the next few years by slashing
prices and broadening coverage to hard to reach places across the globe.



At least that’s the hope and dream put forth
by SpaceX CEO and billionaire founder Elon Musk for his planned network of Low Earth
orbiting (LEO) Starlink satellites aiming  to provide global high speed broadband
internet services to customers worldwide.



Up to 6 more Starlink launches could take
place this year, Musk tweeted post launch.
 



Developing and building the first 60 Starlink
satellites “is one of the hardest engineering projects I’ve ever seen done [and
SpaceX has ever undertaken],” Musk said as he outlined his first detailed
vision of the firms Starlink broadband constellation in a prelaunch media conference
call on May 15 – just hours prior to the original target launch date that eventually
was scrubbed minutes before liftoff due to powerful upper altitude winds.


“The goal of the Starlink system is to provide
high bandwidth, low latency connectivity, ideally throughout the world  that will offer an alternative to expensive services
and also provide internet options to places where no connectivity is currently
available.” 



Watch my SpaceX launch commentary and rocket photos at this Fox 35
Orlando report from May 16 launch attempt:

Watch for Ken’s continuing
onsite coverage of NASA, SpaceX, ULA, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman
and more space and mission reports direct from the Kennedy Space Center, Cape
Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida and Wallops Flight Facility, Virginia.



Stay tuned here for Ken’s continuing Earth and
Planetary science and human spaceflight news: www.kenkremer.com –www.spaceupclose.com – twitter @ken_kremer
– email: ken at kenkremer.com



Dr. Kremer is a research scientist and journalist based in the
KSC area, active in outreach and interviewed regularly on TV and radio about
space topics.
………….

Ken’s photos are for sale and he is available for lectures and outreach events

Ken Kremer

Watch for Ken’s continuing onsite coverage of NASA, SpaceX, ULA, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and more space and mission reports direct from Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida and Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. Stay tuned here for Ken's continuing Earth and Planetary science and human spaceflight news. Dr. Kremer is a research scientist and journalist based in the KSC area, active in outreach and interviewed regularly on TV and radio about space topics. Ken’s photos are for sale and he is available for lectures and outreach events.

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