Happy World UFO Day! Yes, there really is a holiday for everything!
A beautiful nighttime launch of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 (its been a big couple of days for various Falcon spaceships around the galaxy), as it took off in from Cape Canaveral, Florida, separated into two parts (the cargo was 11 communications satellites destined for low-Earth orbit which flew on to deploy a couple of minutes later), and then returned safely to the launchpad on Earth. Finally a fully reusable vehicle!!! Or in the words of Bad Astronomy’s Phil Plait “space history was made. For the first time the first stage of a rocket came back from helping boost a payload to orbit and landed vertically back at the launch site” (http://www.slate.com/blogs/bad_astronomy/2015/12/21/spacex_successfully_re_lands_a_rocket_booster_after_a_launch.html).
Then there was the hysterically snarky tweets between between competing space company’s CEO’s @elonmusk and @jeffbezos.
(Photos and Tweets: @ORBCOMM_Inc, @SpaceX, @elonmusk, @JeffBezos)