With big names such as SpaceX and Blue Origin are stealing headlines left and right, smaller space-travel startups tend to cruise under the radar. Rocket Lab is one of those companies, and it just stole the show with the very first start of the Electron launch vehicle. Unfortunately his debut is not quite exactly as the company would have liked.
The rocket — Rocket Lab aptly and humorously with the name “Test” — lifted from the company’s launch complex in New Zealand, with success in the separation and the firing of the two phases as planned. However, while the vessel had enough pizzazz to make it in space, it does not actually create a job, that was the ultimate goal of the test.
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— Rocket Lab (@RocketLabUSA) May 25, 2017
“We didn’t quite reach orbit and we will investigate the reason why,” Rocket Lab CEO Peter Beck said in a statement. “However, the reach of the space in our first test puts us in an incredibly strong position to accelerate the commercial phase of our program, providing our clients with job hunting and making space open for business.”
What is perhaps most interesting to the semi-successful first launch of the Electron is that the rocket was developed entirely from the ground up. The entire process, from idea to launch, took only four years, that is a very impressive feat.
Such as SpaceX, Rocket Lab business plan of a hinge to be able to sell spots on the launch of the vehicles for businesses and government groups wanting to satellites in orbit. The company already has customers prepared to pay for its services, including the NASA. Two test flights are planned for this year, at which point the company plans on beginning commercial operation.