SpaceX’s Grasshopper Vertical Takeoff Vertical Landing Vehicle aims to do what no rocket has done before: land in one piece. Most rockets are designed to burn up on re-entry. This one reached 820 feet and land safely.
Why? Well, one of the obstacles to routinely putting people in space is the cost associated with it, and producing reusable spacecraft will go a long way to reducing that cost. Besides, SpaceX founder Elon Musk has big plans.