Rocket Lab is a spacecraft manufacturer and launch service provider with launch sites in New Zealand and the United States. Started in 2006 by Peter Beck as a privately-owned New Zealand company, it is now a public US company with a New Zealand subsidiary.
Rocket Lab's launch vehicle is called Electron. It's a small rocket at 18 meters (59 ft), catering to the small payload market.
As well as launching spacecraft, Rocket Lab also makes them. Photon is a configurable spacecraft used for everything from low Earth orbit to interplanetary missions. It uses an in-house developed engine called Curie, and flies as the Electron rocket's upper stage.
Rocket Lab is developing a new 8-ton class reusable launch vehicle called Neutron, due to begin service in 2024.
Launch Complex 1 is Rocket Lab's New Zealand launch site, located on the remote Mahia Peninsula on the east coast of the North Island. It launches rockets east across the Pacific Ocean.
Launch Complex 2 is located at Wallops Island, Virginia, USA. The location was selected in 2018 and opened in 2019. It is currently capable of supporting up to 12 missions per year.
- www.rocketlabusa.com Official website
Footnotes & References
1. www.rocketlabusa.com/launch/neutron/ (retrieved 2021-10-22)
3. spacenews.com/rocket-lab-inaugurates-u-s-launch-site/ (2019-12-12)
4. www.rocketlabusa.com/launch/launch-sites/ (2021-10-22)