Watch Rocket Lab send its first commercial rocket to space

Rocket Lab's Electron rocket soars above its Mahia Peninsula launchpad

ROCKET LABRocket Lab's Electron rocket soars above its Mahia Peninsula launchpad

Rocket Lab's maiden commercial launch on Sunday was a moment of pride for all New Zealanders, and pure Thunderbirds Are Go delight for geekier Kiwis as "It's Business Time" successfully launched a fleet of cube sats into low Earth orbit.

More about Rocket Lab and the future plans of the company, including a starting place in the United States, you can find here.

This satellite launch mission was nicknamed "It's Business Time", in reference to its fully commercial nature as well as in tribute to one of the songs by Flight of the Conchords, a New Zealand parody-pop duo.

The company will try for one more commercial launch in 2018.

There's no slowing Rocket Lab down, with Mr Beck aiming at launching a rocket a month by the end of the year, and even one a week by 2020.

Just as cell phones have shrunk, similar technological advancements have made satellites smaller and more capable.

Rocket Lab has now flown the Electron booster, a small-satellite launcher, three times. "Launch will no longer be the bottleneck that slows innovation in space".

Rocket Lab represents a second dramatic shift in the launch industry toward smaller, cheaper rockets that fly nearly every day.

Rocket Lab, however, now has a clear edge in the race to cheap space with most of the other companies still being in the prototyping and testing stage of their operations.

Sunday's Rocket Lab mission included payloads for customers like Spire Global, which collects data about ships and planes around the globe, and Fleet Space Technologies, which aims to connect remote devices to the internet.

Rocket can put a 150kg satellite into low Earth orbit for US$5.7m - chump change in aerospace terms.

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The Electron rocket is 1.2 metres in diameter and 17 metres in height.

"That's really what it's all about".

Cheap, quick access to space has officially arrived - and in some serious style.

"This year has been about scaling our team, facilities and processes to enable reliable, high frequency Electron launches to orbit", Mr Beck said.

Ten months have passed since that flight.

Rocket Lab's competition may not be too far behind. Its system launches a rocket from under the wing of a Boeing 747 in midair.

Now that the company has successfully launched their third rocket, the organization is getting ready for their next flight. "And do they have the customer base?"

The company say that the schedule for the next mission will be announced shortly.

The going rate at Rocket Lab is about £31,000 ($40,000) a kilo, as compared with £2,300 ($3,000) a kilo at SpaceX.

"We're very lucky the investors we have onboard are not looking for a quick exit but rather to build a large company", he says.

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