SpaceX Demonstrates Grasshopper Flying Sideways, Landing Vertically [Video]

Posted Aug 14, 2013

Yesterday SpaceX tested out the Falcon 9 test rig (code named Grasshopper) in completing a divert test.  The Falcon 9 flew 250 meters (820.21 feet) with a 100 meters (328.08) lateral maneuver and then it returned to the center of the pad.

This test shows how SpaceX’s Falcon 9 is able to perform aggressive steering maneuvers than have been attempted in previous flights.  The Falcon 9 is taller than a ten story building so this makes the maneuvering a bit more challenging.  Being able to divert the Falcon 9 like this is essential for landing it again from space at hypersonic velocity.

Check out the video below: