The 13th mission of the American private aerospace company Rocket Lab ended in failure last Saturday in connection with the failure of an ultra-light class Electron rocket shortly after launch.
Electron successfully took off at 17:19 Eastern time (Sunday, 0:19 Moscow time) from the main launch complex Rocket Lab on the Mahia Peninsula in northeastern New Zealand. Everything went as normal, but a few minutes after the launch, the broadcast from the rocket stopped. As it turned out, an anomaly occurred during the start of the second-stage engines, after which the rocket began to lose speed and then fell.
The live broadcast from the Electron rocket stopped after about 5 minutes and 45 seconds of flight, and 45 seconds after that, a company employee reported “initiating a failure response plan“.
This was a big surprise for Rocket Lab, which had 11 successful Electron launches in a row since the beginning of its program (the first launch in May 2017 was also unsuccessful).
Commenting on the incident, Rocket Lab CEO Peter Beck called the day “difficult” for the team and apologized to Spaceflight, Canon Electronics, Planet and In-Space Mission for the fact that the company could not put their satellites into orbit. A total of seven satellites were lost. “Rest assured, we will find the cause of the problem, fix it, and will soon return to the launch pad.“, – Beck assured users and partners in his microblog on Twitter.
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