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Photos: SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket Launch and Landing for CRS-8 Mission

The Falcon Has Landed

SpaceX (via Flickr as SpaceX Photos)

On April 8, 2016, a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched a Dragon cargo ship to the International Space Station for NASA, then attempted to land on a drone ship at sea. See photos from the private spaceflight in our gallery here. THIS VIEW: SpaceX's Falcon 9 stands triumphant on its drone ship landing pad after touching down on April 8, 2016.

SpaceX CRS-8 Mission First Stage Landing

SpaceX (via Flickr as SpaceX Photos)

The resuable first stage of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket lands on a floating barge after launching a cargo capsule to the International Space Station from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on April 8, 2016.

SpaceX CRS-8 Mission First Stage Landing

SpaceX (via Flickr as SpaceX Photos)

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket first stage lands on a floating barge after launching a cargo capsule to the International Space Station from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on April 8, 2016.

SpaceX CRS-8 Mission First Stage Landing

SpaceX (via Flickr as SpaceX Photos)

The resuable first stage of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket lands on a floating barge after launching a cargo capsule to the International Space Station from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on April 8, 2016.

SpaceX CRS-8 Mission First Stage Landing

SpaceX (via Flickr as SpaceX Photos)

The resuable first stage of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket lands on a floating barge after launching a cargo capsule to the International Space Station from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on April 8, 2016.

SpaceX CRS-8 Mission First Stage Landing

SpaceX (via Flickr as SpaceX Photos)

The resuable first stage of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket lands on a floating barge after launching a cargo capsule to the International Space Station from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on April 8, 2016.

SpaceX's Falcon 9 Rocket Coming Down on Drone Ship

SpaceX

The first stage of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket comes in for a successful landing on a robotic drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean on April 8, 2016.

SpaceX Rocket After Drone Ship Landing

SpaceX

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket stands atop the drone ship "Of Course I Still Love You" after a successful landing in the Atlantic Ocean on April 8, 2016 in this view from a chase plane.

SpaceX CRS-8 Mission First Stage Landing

SpaceX (via Flickr as SpaceX Photos)

The resuable first stage of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket lands on a floating barge after launching a cargo capsule to the International Space Station from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on April 8, 2016.

Liftoff!

SpaceX

SpaceX's Falcon 9 launched at 4:43 p.m. EDT from the company's launchpad at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

Space Streak

SpaceX

The Falcon 9 streaks into space in this awesome long-exposure view from SpaceX's launch on April 8, 2016.

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Space.com Staff

Space.com is the premier source of space exploration, innovation and astronomy news, chronicling (and celebrating) humanity's ongoing expansion across the final frontier. Originally founded in 1999, Space.com is, and always has been, the passion of writers and editors who are space fans and also trained journalists. Our current news team consists of Editor-in-Chief Tariq Malik; Editor Hanneke Weitering, Senior Space Writer Mike Wall; Senior Writer Meghan Bartels; Senior Writer Chelsea Gohd, Senior Writer Tereza Pultarova and Staff Writer Alexander Cox. Senior Producer Steve Spaleta oversees our space videos, with Kim Hickock as our Reference Editor and Diana Whitcroft as our Social Media Editor.