Rocket Lab confirms loss of rocket this morning

Photo: Rocket Lab

New Zealand-founded company Rocket Lab has lost a rocket during its latest launch off the Mahia Peninsula on the East Coast this morning.

Seven satellites from Japan, the US and the UK lifted off around 9.20am - a day earlier than planned because of bad weather due later this week.

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

It's the company's first failure.

It's apologising to customers that had satellites on board Electron.
Founder Peter Beck has also apologised and said the company will find out what the issue was, "correct it and be back on the pad soon". 
The mission name was “Pics Or It Didn’t Happen” carrying seven small satellites to a 500km circular low Earth orbit for a range of customers.

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

It also included five shoebox-sized Earth observation satellites, for the San Francisco company Planet, which already has a fleet 120 of them.

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Posted on 05-07-2020 17:28 | By morepork

The general level of Kiwi Tech competence is viewed around the world as high (and there are NZers working in some very critical aerospace jobs in the US and Europe) so this is a most unfortunate setback. It will affect the company’s credibility, but let’s hope not too much. I have no doubt they will learn by any and all bad experiences and just get better as time goes on.