Rocket Lab vehicle fails to reach orbit

James Marshall
July 5, 2020

It's planning to launch its 13th mission, "Pics Or It Didn't Happen", from a complex on New Zealand's Mahia Peninsula at 5:19PM Eastern with a livestream (below) available 15 minutes before takeoff. "Rest assured we will find the issue, correct it and be back on the pad soon".

Rocket Lab has previously put satellites into space for customers including NASA and the USA.

Then the footage ends with Rocket Lab saying the signal from electron had become too weak to continue the video feed.

The mission appeared to be progressing as intended, but the launch vehicle appeared to experience unexpected stress during the "Max Q" phase of launch, or the period during which the Electron rocket experiences the most significant atmospheric pressure prior to entering space.

However, Rocket Lab said a problem occurred late in the flight during the second stage burn and the Electron rocket was lost.

Rocket Lab CEO and founder Peter Beck posted an apology to Twitter, noting that all satellites were lost, and that he's "incredibly sorry" to all customer who suffered loss of payload today.

Public fireworks shows may be in short supply this weekend due to the pandemic, but Rocket Lab is ready to fill the gap.

Rocket Lab is launching a rideshare mission today which includes seven small satellites from a number of different companies, including primary payload provider Canon, which is flying a satellite equipped with the camera-maker's Earth imaging technology, including high-res photo capture equipment. "This unprecedented dataset helps researchers, students, businesses and governments discover patterns, detect early signals of change, and make timely, informed decisions".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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