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Thread: Rocket Lab (NZ): opening US launch facility

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    Moderator Dr Mordrid's Avatar
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    Default Rocket Lab (NZ): opening US launch facility

    The Kiwi mini-Falcon 9's third launch succeeds...

    https://spaceflightnow.com/2018/11/1...-status-center

    Rocket Lab has declared success on todays mission, the first operational launch by the companys Electron rocket. All six satellites have deployed from the Curie kick stage.
    Short version of launch
    https://youtu.be/QfBCuK6wEYA

    Full webcast
    https://youtu.be/sPwMuUxSrcA

    Animation showing how the Curie kick stage (space tug) operates,

    https://youtu.be/GBI8tl3poC8
    Dr. Mordrid
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    An elephant is a mouse built to government specifications.

    I carry a gun because I can't throw a rock 1,250 fps

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    Moderator Dr Mordrid's Avatar
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    Rocket Lab now has 10 launches under its belt, and is working on reusability; the first stage will parachute in, then be retrieved by a helicopter.

    And,

    https://spacenews.com/rocket-lab-ina...s-launch-site/

    Rocket Lab inaugurates U.S. launch site

    WASHINGTON — The U.S. Air Force will be the first customer for a Rocket Lab Electron launching in 2020 from a new launch site in Virginia, the company announced Dec. 12.

    Rocket Lab formally opened Launch Complex (LC) 2, a launch pad at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at Wallops Island, Virginia, adjacent to the pad used by Northrop Grumman’s Antares rocket. The launch site, similar to the company’s existing Launch Complex 1 in New Zealand, is specifically designed for U.S. government customers who prefer to launch from American soil and also want responsive launch capabilities.

    “We’ve certainly made a number of improvements to the pad, but the pads look identical,” Peter Beck, chief executive of Rocket Lab, said in an interview. “That’s part of the reason why we were able to build the site so quickly.” Construction of the pad started in February after a groundbreaking ceremony in October 2018.
    >
    LC-2 is designed to handle up to 12 launches per year. Beck said that once they get that first launch done next week and handle any “teething issues” with the new pad, they’ll be ready to support additional launches “as customers require.” He expected that the company will, between the two launch sites, perform at least one launch a month in 2020, double the rate of six launches the company conducted in 2019.
    >
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    Dr. Mordrid
    ----------------------------
    An elephant is a mouse built to government specifications.

    I carry a gun because I can't throw a rock 1,250 fps

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