“Side booster rockets return to Cape Canaveral,” explains Musk on twitter. “Center lands on droneship.”
The two side boosters will be recycled from prior Falcon 9 launches and make precision guided propulsive, upright ground soft landings back at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. Each booster is outfitted with a quartet of grid fins and landing legs. The center core is newly built and heavily modified.
“Sides run high thrust, center is lower thrust until sides separate & fly back. Center then throttles up, keeps burning and lands on droneship. If we’re lucky!” Musk elaborated.
The center booster will touch down on an ocean going droneship prepositioned in the Atlantic Ocean some 400 miles (600 km) off of Florida’s east coast.
Moon Express is printing their lander engines for less than $2000 in two weeks.
All Moon Express robotic spacecraft are environmentally green, use eco-friendly fuels, advanced carbon composites and silicates and a Moon Express PECO rocket engine.
MX-1 – A single engine robotic spacecraft. The MX-1 has a 30 kg payload capacity.
MX-2 – A two-stage robotic spacecraft with a 30 kg payload capacity.
MX-5 – A 5-engine, platform configuration that can include MX-1 or MX-2 staged system. The MX-5 has a 150 kg payload capacity.
MX-9 – A 9-engine platform configuration, designed for sample return. The MX-9 has over a 500 kg payload capacity.