Main Engine Cuts off, Falcon 9 First Stage Separates

IXPE spacecraft in space
The Imaging X-Ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) spacecraft is NASA’s first mission dedicated to measuring X-ray polarization. Image credit: NASA

The Falcon 9 rocket’s nine Merlin engines have finished their burn for main engine cutoff (MECO), and the first stage has separated from the rocket.

As the second stage continues carrying IXPE on its flight, the rocket’s first stage will attempt a targeted landing on SpaceX’s drone ship “Just Read the Directions.” That’s coming up shortly.