Mission (now) successful! Rocket launched from Boeing 747

That happened over the Pacific. Virgin Orbit, the company of renowned businessman Richard Branson, managed to launch the 21-meter rocket yesterday. View images of the launch here:

The rocket puts ten small NASA satellites into orbit around Earth. An earlier attempt, in May last year, failed when the rocket’s motor failed to ignite upon release. Engineers then had to end the flight.

This time, the company did manage to launch the rocket from beneath the Boeing 747. “The whole team is going crazy,” the company wrote on Twitter after its successful launch.

Upcoming market

Virgin Orbit wants to try to capture some of the emerging market for the launch of small satellites. The company’s next flight will therefore be a commercial one, it has already announced.

SpaceX, Elon Musk’s company, is the best known competitor. In addition, there is stiff competition from other so-called NewSpace companies such as Firefly Aerospace and Rocket Lab.

Source: RTL Nieuws by www.rtlnieuws.nl.

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