This mission is NASA's 16th mission of SpaceX, which is part of a long-term contract to deliver supplies in space.
Instead of landing at SpaceX's designated landing pad, it ended up submerging in the Atlantic Ocean - just off the Florida coast.
A SpaceX rocket booster is still floating in the ocean after the Falcon 9 missed its intended ground target and splash-landed following Wednesday's launch from Cape Canaveral.
Meanwhile, a crowd gathered Thursday night at Jetty Park, hoping to see the rocket moved back to land.
Minutes after liftoff, the rocket's first stage separated as normal, but as that booster part prepared into position for landing, it appeared to lose control and started spinning.
Despite the landing, the mission successfully placed in orbit its Dragon uncrewed cargo spacecraft.
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"Engines stabilized rocket spin just in time, enabling an intact landing in water!"
"The first stage did land in the water", SpaceX spokesperson John Insprucker said during a live webcast.
Musk says the new "block 5" Falcon 9 stages are designed fly dozens of times with minimal refurbishment between launchings, a key element in the company's drive to lower launch costs by recovering and re-flying recovered stages.
The rocket was initially meant to take off Tuesday but was delayed for a day after engineers discovered moldy mouse food in one of the science investigations created to study the effect of microgravity on the immune system. The moment was captured on video and shared on Twitter by SpaceX CEO Elon Musk even though the official SpaceX feed cut away from the rocket as it came down.
The bad food was replaced ahead of Wednesday's launch.