Spectacular video shows a SpaceX rocket plunging to Earth and smashing into the sea.
The mission was a success for the most part: the capsule carried by the rocket made it all the way to the International Space Station and dropped off important cargo to the floating lab.
But the first stage that flew it there dropped back down with the intention of landing safely on Earth, something it has done successfully more than 30 times.
Engines stabilized rocket spin just in time, enabling an intact landing in water! Ships en route to rescue Falcon. pic.twitter.com/O3h8eCgGJ7
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 5, 2018
This time around the booster ran into problems as it fell back down to Earth. The feed was cut as SpaceX seemed to realize the attempted landing was going to fail.
But new video shows that moment, as the rocket crashes back down to the ground, missing the platform it was supposed to land on and instead crashing into the sea.
SpaceX nonetheless hopes to recover the rocket and the company has already worked out the cause of the problem, according to boss Elon Musk.
“Grid fin hydraulic pump stalled, so Falcon landed just out to sea,” he wrote on Twitter. “Appears to be undamaged & is transmitting data. Recovery ship dispatched.”
Looks like a fin got stuck pic.twitter.com/H47v5h7Ekn
— Scott Manley (@DJSnM) December 5, 2018
And the rocket used its engines to stabilize itself enough that it could land safely in the sea, ready to be picked back up.
“Engines stabilized rocket spin just in time, enabling an intact landing in water!” Mr Musk tweeted. “Ships en route to rescue Falcon.”