SpaceX Tests Grasshopper Rocket

SpaceX, the Hawthorne-based commercial spaceflight and rocket operation headed by tech mogul Elon Musk, showed a successful test of a new, vertical takeoff and landing vehicle today, the SpaceX Grasshopper. The company said the 10 story vehicle lifted nearly two stories in an 8-second, test hop in McGregor, Texas earlier this month. The test is the first toward creating reusable rockets, which would allow a rocket to land on earth--intact--rather than being destroyed on re-entry into the Earth's atmosphere. The company said the program is a "critical step" in developing reusable rockets.