Last month, SpaceX announced that it was going to try and land its Falcon 9 spacecraft on this drone barge. The moment has arrived — and you can watch the attempt right here. UPDATE: Aborted.
If you think the challenge SpaceX has set itself sounds difficult, you’d be right! Indeed, the landing spot — referred to as the autonomous spaceport drone by SpaceX but known to others as a, err, barge to most — measures 300 by 100 feet. The rocket is 70 feet wide. SpaceX ackowledges that, pegging their chances of success at around 50 per cent “at best,” pointing out that “stabilizing the Falcon 9 first stage for reentry is like trying to balance a rubber broomstick on your hand in the middle of a wind storm.”
So, hey, this should make for entertaining viewing! The live stream kicks off right now, and the launch is scheduled for 6:20AM US EST (10:20pm Australian Eastern Daylight Saving Time).
Update: The launch has been aborted.