Rocket Lab's Adorable Rocket Just Blasted Off For the First Time

Loading Rocket Lab chief executive Peter Beck in front of the launch tower at Mahia

Loading Rocket Lab chief executive Peter Beck in front of the launch tower at Mahia

Small-satellite launch company Rocket Lab said its Electron rocket "made it to space" in its first test flight, as the Huntington Beach firm and other small-rocket start-ups begin to inch closer to commercial operations.

Rocket Lab did not release precise details of the launch from Mahia Peninsula in New Zealand but said the vehicle had a "great" first stage burn, stage separation, second stage ignition, and fairing separation. But Rocket Labs hopes to launch as many as 50 times a year, a major increase in cadence from the pace set by launch companies today. New Zealand joined the exclusive space-race club today with the successful launch of a Rocket Lab test craft named Electron. And the increase in small cubesats mean that we can perform tiny and cost-effective science projects that build our understanding of the world and space and will eventually, hopefully, allow us to send Katie Hopkins and Piers Morgan off to ruin another planet.

As mentioned in the official blog post, this is one of the three launches Rocket Lab has scheduled for this very year. "To get as far as we did on the first test flight doesn't often happen". However, the intended orbit was not quite achieved with this early test flight.

"If Rocket Lab can quickly get reliable, on time launches, they can capture a market ignored by the current industry".

Rocket Lab was founded by Beck and is privately held.

Rocket Lab is investigating the cause, and the company's engineers in Los Angeles and Auckland will be sifting through data from the launch in the coming weeks.

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But obviously, as the game wore on, the quality and our movement started to pay dividends. "He's a wonderful player". Rodgers added: "We plan for every competition domestically to do that and thankfully we have been able to do that.

Airways has developed an advanced launch services programme in New Zealand, enabling more than 120 stratospheric balloon launches for organisations including NASA and Google over the past three years.

The south Pacific Ocean provided a handsome landscape for a test flight of the commercial rocket, plainly called "It's a test".

"We're committed to making space accessible and this is a phenomenal milestone in that journey", Beck said.

After several days of abortive attempts, Rocket Lab has made history in New Zealand by launching its carbon-composite Electron rocket into Earth orbit on Thursday, May 25.

A flight on an Electron starts at $5.5 million.

The 17m tall rocket - with a silver fern on its nose and a United States flag near its tail - lifted slowly from the launch pad before accelerating to speeds of more than 27,000kph to slip Earth's gravity and reach orbit during the two-and-a-half minute flight into orbit.