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It’s Business Time: Rocket Lab Preps for First Fully Commercial Launch

By | April 4, 2018
Rocket Lab's Electron takes off for its Jan. 21 flight. Photo: Rocket Lab.

Rocket Lab’s Electron takes off for its Jan. 21 flight. Photo: Rocket Lab.

Rocket Lab has confirmed it will open a 14-day launch window this month to conduct the company’s first fully commercial launch. The mission, named “It’s Business Time,” includes manifested payloads for Spire Global and GeoOptics, built by Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems.

The 14-day launch window will open on Friday, April 20. During this time a four-hour launch window will open daily from 12:30 p.m. NZT (8:30 p.m. EST the previous day). It’s Business Time will launch from Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1 in New Zealand.

This mission follows just three months after Rocket Lab’s Jan. 21 launch “Still Testing,” which successfully deployed an Earth imaging satellite for Planet and circularized the orbit of two weather and Automatic Identification System (AIS) ship tracking satellites for Spire Global using Rocket Lab’s in-house designed and built kick stage.

To meet a burgeoning 2018 and 2019 launch manifest, Rocket Lab has rapidly scaled production of its Electron launch vehicle across its three-acre headquarters and production facility in Huntington Beach, California. The company will produce 100 3D-printed Rutherford engines this year to support a monthly launch cadence by the end of 2018.

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