Rocket Lab launches 15th Mission - deploys sats Planet and Canon
by Staff Writers
Mahia, New Zealand (SPX) Oct 30, 2020
Rocket Lab, a space systems company and the global leader in dedicated small satellite launch, has successfully launched its 15th Electron mission and deployed Earth-imaging satellites for Planet and Spaceflight Inc. customer Canon Electronics. The mission was Rocket Lab's fifth for this year, making Electron the second-most frequently flown U.S. launch vehicle in 2020.
The 'In Focus' mission launched from Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1 on New Zealand's Mahia Peninsula at 21:21 UTC, 28 October 2020. The Electron launch vehicle successfully deployed ten commercial small satellites to a 500km circular orbit, bringing the total number of payloads deployed by Rocket Lab to 65.
The payloads on 'In Focus' included the latest flock of Planet's Earth-imaging SuperDove small satellites, each integrated with and deployed from Rocket Lab's Maxwell satellite dispensers. Flock 4e' bolsters Planet's constellation of Earth-observation satellites already on orbit providing medium-resolution global coverage and near-daily revisit.
Canon Electronic's mission objective with their CE-SAT-IIB microsatellite is to demonstrate the company's Earth-imaging capability with a middle-size telescope equipped with an ultra-high sensitivity camera to take night images of the Earth and small size telescopes suitable for CubeSat use.
"Congratulations to Planet on the addition of their latest SuperDoves to their constellation and to the team at Canon Electronics on the deployment of their latest tech demonstration satellite," said Rocket Lab founder and CEO, Peter Beck.
"Electron has once again delivered a smooth ride to orbit and precise deployment for our individual rideshare customers. Continuing to launch in the face of global disruption and adversity, while at the same time becoming the second-most frequently flown U.S. launch vehicle this year, is the latest display our dedication in providing ongoing, easy access to space for our customers.
Details about the customers onboard Rocket Lab's 16th Electron launch will be announced shortly, with the next mission scheduled to take place from Launch Complex 1 in the coming weeks.
Shetland spaceport boosts UK's plans for launch
London, UK (SPX) Oct 23, 2020
Hundreds of space jobs will be created in Scotland following the approval of plans for Lockheed Martin to transfer its satellite launch operations to Shetland Space Centre by the UK government. Shetland Space Centre anticipates that by 2024, the spaceport site could support a total of 605 jobs in Scotland including 140 locally and 210 across the wider Shetland region. A further 150 jobs will also be created through wider manufacturing and support services. Following a thorough process of due dilig ... read more
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