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SpaceX Successfully Tests Prototype "Reusable Space Rocket"

SpaceX is confirming that it conducted a 112-second test firing of the first stage of its F9-R ("R" for "reusable") prototype reusable rocket launcher on Saturday. The test was conducted at SpaceX's development facility in McGregor, Texas. Click here if you want to see a YouTube video of the event.

SpaceX is working toward developing the first-ever reusable rocket launcher, a development that if accomplished, could dramatically reduce the cost of launching payloads into space.

SpaceX says its F9-R generates "just over" 1 million pounds of thrust at sea level, and that this power increases as the rocket rises through the atmosphere, cresting at 1.5 million pounds of thrust once the rocket reaches space.

In an email, a SpaceX spokesperson declined to provide further details on the testing, or on the project in general, until further progress has been made.

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Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On June 17, 2013, at 3:58 PM, RafaelEmmrich wrote:

    Thanks for the information on the test firing. I am stumbling, however, on the term "rocket launcher", which in mind is something that stays on the ground, like a launch pad. I've heard the F9-R referred to as a reusable "rocket", or reusable "first stage", or reusable "launch vehicle".

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Rich Smith
TMFDitty

As a defense writer for The Motley Fool, I focus on defense and aerospace stocks. My job? Every day of the week, I'm monitoring the news, figuring out the winners and losers, and tracking down the promising companies for you to invest in. Follow me on Twitter or Facebook for the most important developments in defense & aerospace, and other great stories.

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