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Submission + - RocketLab achieves first successful orbital mission. (youtube.com)

Hairy1 writes: RocketLab launched it's second test Electron rocket today, successfully inserting an Earth-imaging Dove satellite for Planet and two Lemur-2 satellites for Spire for weather and ship tracking into orbit. The aim of RocketLab is to substantially reduce the cost of launches through using new technologies such as lithium ion batteries to run turbo pumps, 3D printing of engine parts and new construction materials. It also represents New Zealand becoming the eleventh country to achieve spaceflight.

Peter Beck, Founder and CEO of Rocket Lab, says the test is an important next step in democratizing access to space to empower humanity. “Increased access to space will vastly improve humanity’s ability to build out orbital infrastructure, such as constellations of weather and Earth-imaging satellites. These will provide better data about our planet and enable us as a species to make informed decisions about how we better manage our impact. This test launch is a crucial next step in gathering more data about the Electron launch vehicle so we can deliver on this future,” he says.

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RocketLab achieves first successful orbital mission.

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