Here’s What Elon Musk Really Meant When He Said “Close, But No Cigar”

Falcon 9 explodes

Today, we find out what Elon Musk really meant when he tweeted, “close, but no cigar this time.” Last weekend, SpaceX attempted to land the first stage of its Falcon 9 rocket. The idea was to bring the first stage back down and land it on a floating platform in the Atlantic Ocean. Everything was going well until right at the last second.

The problem was the grid fins ran out of hydraulic fluid. Check out how the hard landing looked from a camera on the platform.

Elon Musk explains what happened in a series of tweets to John Carmack.

Here’s a few things I noticed. First, the Falcon 9 was incredibly close to landing. The fact that it was that close to the platform on the first attempt has to be encouraging.

Second, “Full RUD (rapid unscheduled disassembly) event” is an awesome phrase. A scientist’s way of saying shit just blew up.

Musk says the next attempt coming in a few weeks will have 50% more hydraulic fluid.

Falcon 9 explodes
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