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Rocket Lab

Rocket Lab

A company developing rocket systems and space launch vehicles for delivering payloads into space.

Rocket Lab is a company developing rocket systems and space launch vehicles for delivering payloads into space that is headquartered in Huntington Beach, California and was founded in 2006 by Peter Beck. The company has offices and operations in Long Beach, California; Auckland, New Zealand; Mahia, New Zealand; Wallops Island, Virginia; and the Chatham Islands.

Rocket Lab's launch vehicle is called Electron and is capable of delivering nominal payloads of 150kg and can deliver payloads up to a maximum of 225kg. Electron has two rocket stages, a diameter of 1.2 meters, and a height of 17 meters.

Timeline

May 2021
Rocket Lab returns to flight after failed May mission with successful launch for U.S. Space Force

Rocket Lab is back in business launching rockets, after an issue during its last launch in May caused a total loss of the payloads on board.

March 1, 2021
Rocket Lab announces it will go public through a merger with SPAC Vector Acquisition Corp.

December 15, 2020
Rocket Lab successfully launches satellite for Japanese startup Synspective.

Rocket Lab has completed its 17th mission, putting a synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellite on orbit for client Synspective, a Tokyo-based space startup that has raised over $100 million in funding to date.

August 19, 2019
Rocket Lab successfully launches rideshare rocket with two experimental USAF satellites on board

The Electron launched from Rocket Lab's Launch Complex 1 in New Zealand at 12:12 AM NZST (8:12 AM ET).

June 28, 2019
Rocket Lab launches seventh Electron rocket for ‘Make It Rain’ mission.
June 2019
Rocket Lab launches rideshare rocket .
November 2018
Rocket Lab raises a $140,000,000 series E round from Bessemer Venture Partners, Future Fund, Greenspring Associates, K1W1, Khosla Ventures and Promus Ventures.
March 2017
Rocket Lab raises a $75,000,000 series D round from Bessemer Venture Partners, Data Collective, K1W1, Khosla Ventures and Promus Ventures.

Funding rounds

People

Name
Role
LinkedIn

Peter Beck

Founder

Further reading

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Author
Link
Type
Date

Documentaries, videos and podcasts

Title
Date
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Companies

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CEO
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Products/Services

News

Title
Author
Date
Publisher
Description
Devin Coldewey
September 16, 2021
TechCrunch
Building an orbital launch business from scratch is no simple matter, but what if that business is just a stepping stone to a vertically integrated, interplanetary space company? Rocket Lab founder Peter Beck will be joining us next week at TechCrunch Disrupt 2021 (Sept 21-23) to talk about the challenge and exhilaration of pursuing his [...]
Eric Berger
September 10, 2021
Ars Technica
"I think that that's exactly the wrong message to send."
Aria Alamalhodaei
September 8, 2021
TechCrunch
It was a busy first half of the year for U.S.-New Zealand company Rocket Lab, which posted earnings for the first six months of 2021 on Wednesday - the first such reporting since the company went public last month. Rocket Lab reported revenues for the six-month period of $29.5 million. Its order backlog also grew [...]
Aria Alamalhodaei
September 1, 2021
TechCrunch
Peter Beck hasn't been shy about his intention to grow Rocket Lab into more than just a launch provider, but a fully vertically integrated space company that makes spacecraft in addition to sending them to orbit. The company, which he founded in 2006, has taken yet another major stride toward that goal with the news [...]
Aria Alamalhodaei
August 25, 2021
TechCrunch
Peter Beck's earliest memory is standing outside with his father in his hometown of Invercargill, New Zealand, looking up at the stars, and being told that there could very well be people on planets orbiting those stars looking right back at him. "For a three or four year old, that was a mind-blowing thing that [...]
Devin Coldewey
August 23, 2021
TechCrunch
Rocket Lab is one step closer to going to Mars with NASA's approval of the company's Photon spacecraft for an upcoming science mission. If all continues according to plan the two craft will launch in 2024 and arrive on the Red Planet 11 months later to study its magnetosphere. The mission is known as the [...]
Richard Speed
August 23, 2021
go.theregister.com
An interplanetary ESCAPADE via Photon spacecraft and a NASA commercial rocket
Aria Alamalhodaei
August 17, 2021
TechCrunch
Aurora Propulsion Technologies, a Finnish company that develops thrusters and de-orbiting modules for small satellites, will be sending its technology to space for the first time. The company has signed on with Rocket Lab to send its inaugural AuroraSat-1 cubesat into low Earth orbit aboard an Electron rocket rideshare mission in the fourth quarter of [...]
Aria Alamalhodaei
August 11, 2021
TechCrunch
Orbital manufacturing startup Varda Space Industries is moving fast. Only a few weeks after announcing a $42 million Series A, Varda has signed a deal with launch company Rocket Lab for three Photon spacecraft to support the startup's initial missions. The first spacecraft will be delivered in the first quarter of 2023, with the second [...]
Eric Berger
July 30, 2021
Ars Technica
"Pete told us that key contributors would be driving Ferraris to work in a year."
July 29, 2021
AP NEWS
LONG BEACH, Calif. (AP) -- A research and development satellite for the U.S. Space Force was successfully launched into orbit Thursday from a launch pad in New Zealand, California-based Rocket Lab said.
Darrell Etherington
July 29, 2021
TechCrunch
Rocket Lab is back in business launching rockets, after an issue during its last launch in May caused a total loss of the payloads on board. The company was quick to investigate the issue, and announced just over a week ago that it had completed that work, identified the problem and implemented corrective action to [...]
Eric Berger
July 28, 2021
Ars Technica
"We expect to continue to incur net losses for the next several years."
Darrell Etherington
June 22, 2021
TechCrunch
Max Q is a weekly newsletter from TechCrunch all about space. Sign up here to receive it weekly on Mondays in your inbox. This week, China started staffing up its own space station, and Rocket Lab got the nod from NASA to develop small satellites for the purposes of exploring Mars. Meanwhile, space startups continue [...]
Darrell Etherington
June 15, 2021
TechCrunch
Rocket Lab is developing two spacecraft based on its Photon platform to orbit Mars, studying the planet's magnetosphere in order to gain a better understanding of the ways in which Mars' climate has changed over time. The science mission was awarded through NASA's Small Innovative Missions for Planetary Exploration (SIMPLEx) program, and will fly to [...]
Darrell Etherington
June 2, 2021
TechCrunch
Rocket Lab has already received approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to resume its launch activities, following a failure during the second stage burn of its 20th Electron rocket mission that resulted in the loss of the payload. That's a testament to Rocket Lab's safety systems design, and everything working as intended when it [...]
By NICK PERRY, Associated Press
June 1, 2021
Chron
WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) -- New Zealand announced Tuesday it was the latest country...
Nick Perry
June 1, 2021
phys.org
New Zealand announced Tuesday it was the latest country to sign a space agreement with NASA, just as New Zealand's nascent space industry begins to take off.
NICK PERRY Associated Press
June 1, 2021
ABC News
New Zealand has become the latest country to sign a space agreement with U.S. space agency NASA, just as New Zealand's nascent space industry begins to take off
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