9 Spectacular Photos From Last Week's SpaceX Launch And Landing

Whoa.

The giant rocket went up, it came back down on a drone ship in the middle of the ocean, and was safely towed back to land. What more could we possibly want?

Cool pictures. We always want cool pictures.

SpaceX posted some photos from their successful launch and landing last Friday, and they are amazing.

The Falcon 9 rocket may launch again as early as May or June. We can only hope that its second return journey goes as smoothly as its maiden voyage.

launch 1
So it begins
SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket blasts off from the landing site.SpaceX
launch 2
From A Distance
Even standing at a distance, Popular Science editor Sarah Fecht described the launch as "the boom and shake of a thousand fireworks going off, crashing through the sound barrier".SpaceX
launch 3
Successful Launch
The launch carried an inflatable habitat and other supplies to the ISS.SpaceX
trajectory
What goes up...
The launch was picture perfect.SpaceX
Descent
...Must Come Down
Then came the tricky part: landing the Falcon 9 on SpaceX's drone ship.SpaceX
landing
Almost There
Previous attempts at landings ended in explosions.SpaceX
landing
Landing
But even though there were flames, this time SpaceX stuck the landing.SpaceX
Landed-wide shot
Standing tall
The rocket landing sent up cheers around the world.SpaceX
Landed
Ready to go again?
This Falcon 9 rocket may launch again as early as May or June of this year.SpaceX