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In the latest landing video, it seems the Falcon 9 just hovered for a moment above the ship. That being said, it begs the question, how does the booster know where the ground is? Does it purely work off of GPS, a 1 way radar/beacon type system from the landing zone, radar from the rocket, or some means that I'm not aware of?

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    $\begingroup$ Curb feelers? :-) $\endgroup$ Jun 17, 2016 at 15:47
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    $\begingroup$ @PearsonArtPhoto That's why I added the smiley. I suspect the actual solution probably works from even higher than 10m. A radar altimeter might be a possibility, but that's just an uninformed guess. $\endgroup$ Jun 17, 2016 at 16:22
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    $\begingroup$ Less so in height.. $\endgroup$
    – PearsonArtPhoto
    Jun 18, 2016 at 1:36
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    $\begingroup$ "That’s it! That’s a good name – ground! I wonder if it will be friends with me?" $\endgroup$ Jun 18, 2016 at 19:12
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    $\begingroup$ Does this answer your question? How does the Falcon 9 know where the landing barge/pad is? $\endgroup$
    – Christoph
    Aug 26, 2020 at 9:50

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When commenting on one of the early water landings, Elon Musk mentioned there's a radar altimeter (which was calibrated for flat, hard surfaces and might have trouble detecting the water surface as a result).
Can't find a primary source for this, though.

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