|Headquarters||Auckland, New Zealand|
|Peter Beck, CEO|
Some funding has been obtained from the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology. Former Crown Research scientist Peter Beck its founder, CEO and Technical Director. Internet entrepreneur Mark Rocket was the seed investor and co-Director from 2007 to 2011.
The first launch of the Ātea-1 (Māori for 'space') suborbital sounding rocket occurred in late 2009. The 6-metre (20 ft) long rocket weighing 60 kg is designed to carry a 2 kg payload to an altitude of 120 km. It was intended to carry scientific payloads or possibly personal items.[dated info]
Smallsat launch vehicle
In July 2014 it was announced that the company is developing a rocket called Electron, a carbon composite rocket with a payload to orbit of 110 kilograms (240 lb) and a projected cost of less than US$5 million per launch. As of July 2014[update], the first test launch is planned for 2015.
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- Rocket Lab News, Webarchive: "December 2010 - Rocket Lab was awarded a US contract from the Operationally Responsive Space Office (ORS) to study low cost international alternatives. Included in this study is a 640,000Ns booster, a miniature avionics system and a launch vehicle to place small mass satellites into polar and low Earth orbits."
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