Launch of rocket laboratory with DARPA's R3D2 satellite has been moved on Tuesday – Spaceflight Now


Rocket Lab Rocket on the Countdown Sunday (American time). Credit: Rocket Lab

The Rocket Lab launch team canceled a launch attempt on Sunday in New Zealand when it discovered that a video-transmitter with an incorrect appearance on the device for raising electronic equipment took care of a small US military satellite path into orbit to test the innovative shape of the antenna. The engineers shifted the mission to Tuesday (time in the US).

The startup company from the US and New Zealand announced a delay, as Electron counted up to the scheduled day off at 7:36 am. EDT (2336 GMT) Sunday.

"The team has identified a 13dB low-capacity video transmitter," Rocket Lab reported. "This is not a question for years, but we want to understand why, so we will give up for the day."

Peter Beck, founder and CEO of Rocket Lab, said that the rocket was "technically good for flying, because we have redundant connections, but we do not know why performance has fallen and that makes me uncomfortable."

In the update a few hours later, Rocket Lab said that the crews are trying to replace a suspicious video transmitter in time for another attempted launch on Tuesday (US time). The four-time opening window on Tuesday will open at 6.30. EDT (2230 GMT).

In New Zealand, the opening window opens at 11:30 local time on Wednesday.

A two-stage electron rocket will introduce a satellite demonstration satellite radio program RUR risk reduction program at the Orbit Research Advanced Research Project at a height of 264 miles (425 km), where the spacecraft will uncover an antenna in an experiment to show how the expandable reflector arrays they could get into enough rooms to fit a small, relatively cheap rocket.

Illustration of DARPA artist for satellite R3D2. Credit: Northrop Grumman

Known as R3D2, a satellite worth $ 25 million carries an antenna from the Kapton tissue material, which will open up to 2.25 meters in orbit.

The spacecraft was integrated by Northrop Grumman. The R3D2 car received Blue Canyon Technologies from Boulder, Colorado, and the antenna was designed and manufactured by MMA Designs in Louisville, Colorado.

The R3D2 mission is the first launch of Rocket Lab for the US Department of Defense, which explores how to provide more smaller satellites in the field to provide communications to the military, to control the battlefield and other services, making military fleets of spacecraft more resilient to attacks and cheaper. design, manufacture and commissioning.

Rocket Lab started four times since May 2017. After Electron's initial test flight fell into orbit due to a land-fault error, Rocket Lab recorded three successive successes that CubeSats sent to orbit for NASA, commercial enterprises and educational institutions .

As it rises, the Electron rocket will sail to the east from a privately run Rocket Lab base on the northern island of New Zealand. The R3D2 satellite will be installed from the upper phase of Electron about 53 minutes in the flight, thus launching a planned six-month technical demo mission.

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Follow Stephen Clark on Twitter: @ StephenClark1.


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