SpaceX Rocket Successfully Deploys Satellite But Tips Over After Landing

PHOTO: The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is seen as it launches with the Jason-3 spacecraft onboard, Jan. 17, 2016, from Vandenberg Air Force Base Space Launch Complex 4 East in California.PlayBill Ingalls/NASA via AP
WATCH SpaceX Rocket Deploys Satellite But Tips Over After Landing

SpaceX launched the Falcon 9 today from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, and while the rocket successfully deployed the satellite it was carrying, it tipped over after landing, the company said.

The rocket lifted off at 1:42 p.m. ET today, carrying the Jason-3, a NASA and NOAA satellite designed to measure the surface of the world's oceans.

While choppy waters in the ocean caused the video feed of the rocket to cut out, about 25 minutes after takeoff SpaceX said the rocket landed on the drone ship. SpaceX said the rocket appeared to have had a hard landing and a broken landing leg.

SpaceX then said the second stage re-ignition was successful and the Jason-3 satellite was deployed.

SpaceX founder Elon Musk then tweeted that during landing a leg lockout didn't latch, so it tipped over.

SpaceX said, "After further data review, stage landed softly but leg 3 didn't lockout."

PHOTO: The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is seen at Vandenberg Air Force Base Space Launch Complex 4 East with the Jason-3 spacecraft onboard, Jan. 16, 2016, in California.Bill Ingalls/NASA via AP
The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is seen at Vandenberg Air Force Base Space Launch Complex 4 East with the Jason-3 spacecraft onboard, Jan. 16, 2016, in California.

Musk has said drone ship landings are needed for "high velocity missions," which would allow payloads such as satellites to reach a higher orbit. Nailing the landing is huge for SpaceX and space travel as a whole because Musk has previously said he believes reusing rockets -- which cost as much as a commercial airplane -- could reduce the cost of access to space by a factor of one hundred.

PHOTO: SpaceX posted this photo to its Twitter account on Jan. 16, 2016 with the caption, Out at sea for tomorrows launch and landing attempt.SpaceX/Twitter
SpaceX posted this photo to its Twitter account on Jan. 16, 2016 with the caption, "Out at sea for tomorrow's launch and landing attempt."

Previous attempts had come close to landing on the barge but were destroyed when they narrowly missed the mark and suffered crash landings.

The precise landing of the Falcon 9 last month at Cape Canaveral, Florida, has many eager to see if Musk and his team can pull off their second rocket landing.