The StriX-1 satellite will be the third mission for Synspective launched to space by Rocket Lab and the 150th satellite launched overall on Electron
Rocket Lab is preparing to launch its 30th Electron rocket and 150th satellite to space during a dedicated mission for Japanese Earth-imaging company Synspective on Wednesday, September 14 UTC.
The launch will take place from Pad B at Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1 on New Zealand’s Mahia Peninsula. The launch window opens at 20:30 UTC on September 14th (08:30 NZST, September 15th). Back-up opportunities are available through September 28th to accommodate potential weather delays to the launch.
“The Owl Spreads Its Wings” mission is the second of a bulk buy of three Electron launches by Synspective to deliver their StriX satellites to low Earth orbit. StriX-1 is Synspective’s first commercial satellite for its synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellite constellation to deliver imagery that can detect millimeter-level changes to the Earth’s surface from space, independent of weather conditions on Earth and at any time of the day or night. “The Owl Spreads Its Wings” will be Rocket Lab’s third mission for Synspective after successful launches in December 2020 and February 2022.
The mission for Synspective will also mark a series of company milestones for Rocket Lab.
- 30th Electron launch | This mission will be the 30th launch by Rocket Lab of its Electron rocket. At the indisputable small launch market leader, Electron remains the United States’ second most-frequently launched rocket and has been launched more times than all other small launch providers combined.
- 150th satellite to orbit | When the StriX-1 satellite reaches space, it will become the 150th satellite delivered to orbit by Rocket Lab on an Electron rocket.
- 300th Rutherford engine | The Owl Spreads Its Wings will also mark the 300th Rutherford engine launched to space. Designed and built by Rocket Lab, Rutherford is the world’s first 3D-printed, electric pump-fed rocket engine. Earlier this month Rocket Lab successfully test-fired a reused Rutherford first stage engine for the first time. This is a significant technical achievement as Rocket Lab develops Electron into the world’s first reusable orbital small rocket, to which the Rutherford engine is critical to that program’s success.
The launch will be broadcast live approximately 45 minutes prior to lift-off at www.rocketlabusa.com/live-stream.