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

SpaceX Falcon 9 Lands

SpaceX

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket successfully landed on a barge after launching a Dragon spacecraft full of supplies to the International Space Station April 8.

SpaceX Falcon 9 Landed

SpaceX via Twitter

The first stage of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket successfully landed on the droneship "Of Course I Still Love You" April 8 after launching a Dragon spacecraft towards the International Space Station.

SpaceX Launches CRS-8 Mission to International Space Station #3

NASA TV

SpaceX's CRS-8 cargo mission launched to the International Space Station from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on April 8, 2016.

SpaceX Falcon 9 1st Stage Landing #2

NASA TV

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket 1st stage successfully landed on a floating barge in the Atlantic Ocean on April 8, 2016.

Next Stop: Orbit

NASA/Kim Shiflett

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket is powered by nine Merlin engines during its ascent into orbit.

SpaceX Falcon 9 Booster on Drone Ship

NASA TV/SpaceX

A SpaceX Falcon 9 first stage booster sucessfully touched down on a drone ship after launch on Friday, April 8, 2016.

SpaceX Falcon 9 Launching

SpaceX

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket launches from Cape Canaveral, Fla. April 8, bringing a Dragon spacecraft full of supplies to the International Space Station.

A BEAM for Space

SpaceX (via Flickr as SpaceX Photos)

Dragon is hauling some 4,000 lbs. of supplies and gear for the International Space Station. The most anticipated (shown here) is the Bigelow Expandable Activity Module, or BEAM. Built by Bigelow Aerospace, the BEAM module will be attached to the station and then expand nearly 4 times its size to test how inflatable structures can be used for future space exploration.

SpaceX's Fly-back Booster Rocket Landing Explained

By Karl Tate, Infographics Artist

One extra task for SpaceX's CRS-8 launch was to test reusable rocket technology by landing the first stage of the Falcon 9 booster on a drone ship at sea. Here's how that concept works.

SpaceX Falcon 9 1st Stage Landing

NASA TV

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket 1st stage successfully landed on a floating barge in the Atlantic Ocean on April 8, 2016.

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