Rocket Lab, the U.S.-New Zealand company developing the Electron small launch vehicle, plans to carry out its first flight in a window that opens May 21.The company announced May 14 that a 10-day window for the first Electron launch, which the company has dubbed “It’s a Test,” will open at 5 p.m. Eastern May 21 (9 a.m. local time May 22) from the company’s launch site at Mahia Peninsula on New Zealand’s North Island.“We are all incredibly excited to get to this point,” Peter Beck, chief executive of Rocket Lab, said in a statement about the planned launch. “Our talented team has been preparing for years for this opportunity and we want to do our best to get it right.”The company is setting expectations for a test launch that may suffer delays and could end in failure. “During this first launch attempt it is possible we will scrub multiple attempts as we wait until we are ready and conditions are favorable,” Beck said in the statement.The launch, as the company’s name for it emphasizes, is a test flight, with no satellite payload on board. The launch is the first of three such test flights Rocket Lab plans before beginning commercial launches later this year.
Rocket Lab sets date for first Electron launch