The Real Sound of Falcon Heavy STP-2 Launch+Booster Landing

The historic STP-2 mission from Kennedy Space Center, as seen from the viewing area at the end of Route 401 at Port Canaveral. We were 13.0 miles (20.9 km) from launch pad 39A, and 6.0 miles (9.7 km) from the landing zones.

The camera shakes were not cut in order to keep the audio continuous. After side booster separation and the absolutely glorious boostback burn, there was a three-minute period of suspense as we waited to see them restart for the reentry burn. This was the only part cut from the video.

We'd like to say the much anticipated pair of triple sonic booms is well captured here. However, nothing can replicate the experience of being there in person and actually feeling the shock waves.

This was a new endeavor for capturing the real sound. We had two microphones set up in tiny coves near the water (to mitigate the sound of the crowd). When putting the video together, the audio from one mic (angled slightly to the left) was used for the left channel, and vice versa for the right channel. The audio levels were also brought down to reduce distortion as much as possible. Turn it up and enjoy!

Special thanks to Matthew Ward for manning one of our cameras!

Filmed from the Route 401 launch viewing area. BJG DAH FBB SJH 06/25/19


Canon SL1
Canon T3i (video)
Canon T5
Canon T6
Canon XT
18-55mm standard lens
55-250mm telephoto lens (video)
70-300mm telephoto lens
Explore Scientific ED80 f/6.0 Apochromatic Refractor
Zoom H1 microphone

Launch Vehicle Featured:

SpaceX Falcon Heavy
9x Merlin 1D [center core B1057]
9x Merlin 1D [side booster B1052.2]
9x Merlin 1D [side booster B1053.2]
1x Merlin 1D Vacuum [second stage]
launched 06/25/19 at 06:30 UTC

Points of interest:
1:26 - Sound reaches us
3:00 - Side boosters shutdown and boostback
4:39 - Reentry burn
5:42 - Landing burn
6:04 - Landing burn ends with a pair of triple sonic booms!
For those hearing only four sonic booms in total, try listening at 0.75x speed. You should hear six because (1) there are always three from each booster and (2) there are six clear peaks in the waveforms.

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