Rocket Lab preparing for Nasa mission

TAKING OFF: The next Rocket Lab launch will carry the company’s first payload for Nasa. Picture supplied

Rocket Lab is gearing up for its third orbital launch from Mahia Peninsula this year.

It is an educational launch of nanosatellites, (ElaNa)-19 mission, for NASA and will see Rocket Lab’s electron vehicle loft multiple CubeSats to low Earth orbit.

A nine-day window for the launch will open on December 13.

Rocket Lab’s founder and chief executive Peter Beck said it was a privilege to launch NASA payloads.

“Reaching orbit twice already this year has made 2018 a banner year for Rocket Lab. Capping it off with our first launch for NASA is a tremendous way to celebrate the new era of improved access to orbit for small satellites.”

For the mission, the electron launch vehicle is named “This One’s For Pickering” in honour of NZ-born scientist and former Director of NASA’s jet propulsion lab, Sir William Pickering.

For 22 years, Sir William Pickering headed JPL and led the team that developed the first US satellite, Explorer I, launched in 1958.

Rocket Lab is gearing up for its third orbital launch from Mahia Peninsula this year.

It is an educational launch of nanosatellites, (ElaNa)-19 mission, for NASA and will see Rocket Lab’s electron vehicle loft multiple CubeSats to low Earth orbit.

A nine-day window for the launch will open on December 13.

Rocket Lab’s founder and chief executive Peter Beck said it was a privilege to launch NASA payloads.

“Reaching orbit twice already this year has made 2018 a banner year for Rocket Lab. Capping it off with our first launch for NASA is a tremendous way to celebrate the new era of improved access to orbit for small satellites.”

For the mission, the electron launch vehicle is named “This One’s For Pickering” in honour of NZ-born scientist and former Director of NASA’s jet propulsion lab, Sir William Pickering.

For 22 years, Sir William Pickering headed JPL and led the team that developed the first US satellite, Explorer I, launched in 1958.

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