fragments of faile

cut corners (for concern)

Rationalized compassion
Translates to self avoidance.

The flat sided perspective
Inspected commotion.

A smile formulates outside
From tectonic layers within
Inner shakings of the soul
Sought to be controlled.

Explosives down holes
Dropped to the core
As enough gets stuck
In fragmented muck.

Raking the flesh failed
Mistakes until it’s too late
Floating through sails
Of fiction transposed as fate


SpaceX Falcon 9 debris washes ashore in England.

Marking the second time in 2015, debris from a SpaceX rocket has washed ashore overseas.

Early Thursday afternoon (November 26), a fisherman off the British isles of Scilly discovered a large floating object near his boat. With the help of other nearby boats, the object was brought to shore for inspection.

Heavily encrusted in Barnacles, an American flag was the only detail seen peeking out when it was discovered. Efforts to strip the fragment of sea life revealed tell tale signs of its origin - an American SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

SpaceX places their Falcon 9 and flag decals on the interstage between the first and second stages, identifying where on the rocket it came from. However, it wasn’t clear at first which rocket it came from. Many initially thought it was a fragment from June’s failed CRS-7 launch, which broke apart 2 minutes and 19 seconds into flight.

Using the placement of decals on the recovered fragment and careful observation of their relation to vehicle hardware, a group of redditors was able to nail the piece down as the interstage of Falcon 9 #12, which launched the CRS-4 mission on September 21, 2014.

The interstage of CRS-4 prior to launch.

That mission was not equipped with legs for a barge landing test, so the company performed a controlled water landing to test retrofiring procedures. NASA utilized this test as an opportunity to gather reentry data in high altitudes for future Mars missions, and filmed the rocket’s return through the atmosphere.

However, the fate of the CRS-4 first stage was never revealed by NASA or SpaceX following the reentry test. A rocket soft-landing on the ocean would survive somewhat intact before eventually sinking. The recovery of the interstage suggests that impact was harder than intended, and the interstage - located at the very top of the rocket, which lands engines-first - was ripped off.

Photos used to pinpoint the exact flight the fragment came from. Note vehicle hardware in between the ‘o’ and ‘n’, and its placement in relation to the letters and beak of the Falcon decal.

It’s not uncommon for discarded rocket parts to wash ashore. Earlier this year, in May, a portion of DSCOVR’s payload fairing washed ashore in the Bahamas.

 A GoPro camera was recovered from the fairing and returned to SpaceX, which subsequently published the footage.

Vehicles launching over land, such as those from Russia and China, drop their boosters over sparsely populated regions of their countries. Often, they crash near villages, blocking roads and landing in people’s houses.