Aerospace startup Rocket Lab will try again this weekend to launch its first commercial mission to space, a flight the company has dubbed “It’s Business Time.” The small satellite launcher is aiming to send up seven tiny probes into low Earth orbit on its Electron rocket. If successful, the flight will officially kick off commercial operations for the company, which has only pulled off two test flights so far. Rocket Lab has had a hard time getting “It’s Business Time” up in the air, though. The company, which launches out of a private site in New Zealand, has tried multiple times to fly this particular mission, but had to stand down after noticing some weird behavior with one of the rocket’s motor controllers. After implementing a few design changes, Rocket Lab is ready to try again. The company has a launch window that extends from this evening, November 10th, through November 19th, and it has the option to launch every day between 10PM ET and 2AM ET. Going up on this flight is a handful of small satellites from Spire Global, Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems, Fleet Space Technologies, and the Irvine CubeSat STEM Program, and some of these probes are about the size of a shoebox. That’s because Rocket Lab’s primary goal is just launching small satellites. The company’s vehicle, the Electron, stands at around 56 feet tall and is capable of putting between 330 and nearly 500 pounds into low orbits above Earth. That’s perfect for satellite operators that focus… [Read full story]
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