Announced at a National Press Club event last Thursday, SpaceX is investigating whether it may be able to modify its Falcon 9 vehicle so that each stage returns home and lands under its own power.
While the current design splashes down for recovery, Elon Musk, who is the founder, CEO and chief technical officer for the company, says that should the plan be realized, it would be the world's "first fully reusable rocket" - and achieve dramatic significant cost savings.
By reusing most of the vehicle, the cost of flying to orbit becomes primarily the cost of propellant, he says, which puts it at $200,000 a flight.
'We’ll see if this works,' he says. 'If it does work, it will be pretty huge.'