Satellite-carrying rocket ‘lost’ after New Zealand launch

How to watch Rocket Lab launch satellites for Canon, Planet and more live

The launch, which is named "Pics or It Didn't Happen" is set to take place during a window which opens at 5:19 PM EDT (2:19 PM PDT) and extends until 6:03 PM EDT (3:03 PM EDT), lifting off from Rocket Lab's Launch Complex 1 on the Mahia Peninsula in New Zealand.

Mr Beck apologised on Twitter this morning, saying he was "incredibly sorry that we failed to deliver our customers satellites today".

"The issue occurred late in the flight during the 2nd stage burn".

Beck tweeted the loss of the rocket at 9.47am.

It's apologising to customers that had satellites on board Electron.

The main satellite aboard the rocket was meant to demonstrate Canon Electronics Inc.'s Earth-imaging technology.

The launch included a 67-kilogramme earth-imaging satellite for Canon Electronics to photograph objects on the ground as small as 90 centimetres wide.

"While it's never the outcome that we hope for, the risk of launch failure is one Planet is always prepared for", Planet Labs said in a statement on Saturday, adding it looked "forward to flying on the Electron again" in the future.

And, it said: "Planet's satellites are capable of imaging the Earth's entire landmass on a near-daily basis".

"The financial loss here is generally covered from our customers by insurance", Beck said.

"We won't put another vehicle into the sky until we are really, really happy, and we have got thousands and thousands of channels of data to trawl through to figure out route cause and make any corrections", he said.

Asked how significant a setback that could be, Beck remained optimistic.

Before the failure, Rocket Lab said it was planning monthly launches for the remainder of the year and into 2021.

"But this doesn't really affect our business or viability thereof in any way".

"Today's anomaly is a reminder that space launch can be unforgiving, but we will identify the issue, rectify it, and be safely back on the pad as soon as possible".

Rocket Lab lists itself as a United States company with headquarters at a wholly-owned New Zealand subsidiary and specialises in delivering small satellites to low Earth orbit.

Related:

Comments


Other news