Rocket carrying four satellites `lost` after being launched from New Zealand

Rocket carrying four satellites `lost` after being launched from New Zealand

Rocket carrying four satellites `lost` after being launched from New Zealand

A rocket from small-satellite launch firm Rocket Lab failed to reach orbit minutes after a successful liftoff from New Zealand on Saturday, the company said, losing its payload of seven small satellites it had meant to carry to space.

He said the company would leave no stone unturned to figure out what happened and get back to the launchpad.

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

Despite the loss happening on the company's 13th mission, Beck said he was not superstitious. "So we won't put another vehicle in the sky until we are really, really happy ... we've got tens of thousands of data streams to trawl through to make those corrections".

Asked who would bear the cost of the loss, Beck said payload customers typically had insurance in place for these kinds of events.

"We lost the flight late into the mission", he tweeted. Rest assured we will find the issue, correct it and be back on the pad soon.

Despite locating its headquarters in New Zealand, Rocket Lab lists itself as an American company and specialises in delivering small satellites to Earth's lower orbit.

It's apologising to customers that had satellites on board Electron. This isn't the end, then, but it suggests that Rocket Lab may have work to do before it's a completely reliable option for getting machines into space.

In a statement, Rocket Lab said: "An issue was experienced today during Rocket Lab's launch that caused the loss of the vehicle. We are deeply sorry to the customers on board Electron". The issue occurred late in the flight during the 2nd stage burn.

The primary payload for the launch was a 67kg imaging satellite built by Canon Electronics, whose launch was arranged by Spaceflight Inc.

In a media release, Rocket Labs said the issue happened about four minutes into Electron's flight, resulting in the "safe loss of the vehicle".

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.

"We know many people poured their hearts and souls into those spacecraft".

"The launch team operated with professionalism and expertise to implement systems and procedures that ensured the anomaly was managed safely".

The satellite, capable of taking images with a resolution of 90cm, was meant to demonstrate the spacecraft's technologies as the company prepared mass production of similar satellites. "This unprecedented dataset helps researchers, students, businesses and governments discover patterns, detect early signals of change, and make timely, informed decisions".

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