Ever wondered what a 10-story-tall Grasshopper Vertical Takeoff Vertical Landing (VTVL) rocket looks like when it’s taking off – from above? Me either, but after watching the clip below filmed from a six-propeller hexacopter drone flying high above I can say it’s pretty damn cool!
The footage was captured on Monday as the SpaceX Grasshopper – consisting of a Falcon 9 rocket first stage tank, Merlin 1D engine, four steel and aluminum landing legs with hydraulic dampers and a steel support structure – climbed to a record-high altitude of 744m.
It’s all part of an ongoing experiment that is testing the technology needed to return a rocket back to Earth intact. Most rockets are designed to burn up upon reentry into the atmosphere but SpaceX is trying to build one that not only returns safely, but can land vertically.